Red Dress Day honours the memories of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls across Canada. Métis artist Jaime Black helped inspire the red dress movement, where red dresses are hung from windows and trees to represent the pain and loss felt by loved ones and survivors.
Originally starting as the REDdress art installation, Red Dress Day became a grassroots movement across North America. The project was made up of 600 community-donated red dresses, which were later placed in public spaces throughout Winnipeg and across Canada.
The artist chose the colour red after speaking with an Indigenous friend who told her that is the only colour spirits can see. Red dresses are used to call the spirits of missing and murdered women and girls back to their loved ones. The goal was to speak to the gendered and racialized nature of violent crimes against Indigenous women and to evoke a presence by marking absence.
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