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City of Montreal commissions projection in memory of Raphaël Napa André

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The City of Montréal has come up with a creative way to honour the memory of Raphaël Napa André, the Innu man whose body was discovered frozen to death in downtown Montreal last January.

As of Thursday, a series of pictures, memories and drawings are being projected on the façade of the Open Door shelter on Parc avenue.

The pictures were provided by Napa André’s family and community of Matimekosh – Lac John.

“They were very happy,” said Annik Boivin, one of the artists behind the project.

The project is a collaboration between the city and non-profit MAPP MTL, along with Indigenous artist Isaac Murdoch and Simon Rock, a mapping technician.

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The projection also features music from several Innu artists.

“The circumstances surrounding the death of Raphaël Napa André shocked all Montrealers. With this projection, we wish to honour Mr. André’s memory by highlighting his story with photos, drawings in his honour and written messages,” Montreal mayor Valérie Plante wrote in a press release.

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The initiative is also done in the spirit of reconciliation with Indigenous People and those experiencing homelessness.

“As the city is committed to reconciliation, I salute the resilience of Indigenous People who are experiencing homelessness and I reaffirm our will to act in order to support those who are the most vulnerable,” Plante added.

READ MORE: Coroner investigating death of Montreal homeless man found inside portable toilet

Boivin says she wants to transmit that message of solidarity through art.

“We want people to come together. What we want to do is create bridges between the nations, between the people, because we all are brothers and sisters,” Boivin said.

The projection will take place every night from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. until Feb. 14.

An additional projection will take place on Feb. 27.

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The city says the projection is a first step in a series of artistic tributes to Indigenous People experiencing homelessness.

A permanent mural by Indigenous artists is expected to come to life next summer.

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© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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