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  • Beau Dick

    Artist

    Chief Beau Dick (1955-2017), Walas Gwa’yam, was a Kwakwaka’wakw (Musgamakw Dzawada’enuxw First Nation) artist and activist who was acclaimed as one of the Northwest Coast’s most versatile and talented carvers. He was born in the community of Alert Bay, BC, and lived in Kingcome Inlet, Vancouver and Victoria before returning to Alert Bay to live and work. He began carving at an early age, studying under his father, Benjamin Dick, his grandfather, James Dick, and other renowned artists such as Henry Hunt and Doug Cranmer. He also worked alongside master carvers Robert Davidson, Tony Hunt and Bill Reid. In support of the Idle No More movement, Dick performed two spiritual and political copper-breaking ceremonies on the steps of the British Columbia legislature in Victoria in 2013, and on Parliament Hill in Ottawa in 2014. Dick created several important public works, including a transformation mask for the Canadian Pavilion at Expo 86 in Vancouver and the Ga’akstalas Totem Pole for Stanley Park, carved with Wayne Alfred and raised in 1991. His work has been shown in exhibitions locally and internationally, including Canada House, London, UK (1998); the 17th Biennale of Sydney, Australia (2010); documenta 14 in Athens, GR, and Kassel, DE (2017); and White Columns, New York (2019). He was the recipient of the 2012 VIVA Award and was artist-in-residence at the University of British Columbia’s Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory from 2013 to 2017.

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  • Skeena Reece

    Artist

    Skeena Reece (Tsimshian/Gitksan/Cree, b. 1974) is an artist based on the West Coast of British Columbia. Her installation and performance work has garnered national and international attention, most notably for Raven: On the Colonial Fleet (2010) presented at the 2010 Sydney Biennale as part of the group exhibition Beat Nation. Her multi-disciplinary practice includes performance art, spoken word, humour, “sacred clowning,” writing, singing, songwriting, video and visual art. She studied media arts at Emily Carr University of Art and Design, and was the recipient of the British Columbia Award for Excellence in the Arts (2012), the VIVA Award (2014) and the Hnatyshyn Award (2017). For Savage (2010), a collaborative work with Lisa Jackson, Reece won a Genie Award for Best Acting in a Short Film and the film won a Golden Sheaf Award for Best Multicultural Film, ReelWorld Outstanding Canadian Short Film, Leo Awards for Best Actress and Best Editing. Solo exhibitions include Surrounded at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery (2019); Touch Me at the Comox Valley Art Gallery, Courtenay, BC (2018); Moss at Oboro Gallery, Montréal (2017) and The Sacred Clown & Other Strangers at Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art, Winnipeg (2015). Group Exhibitions include Red on Red: Indigeneity, Labour, Value at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver (2022); Women & Masks: An Arts-Based Research Conference at Boston University (2021-22), Interior Infinite at the Polygon Gallery, North Vancouver (2021); Àbadakone at the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (2018-2019) and Sweetgrass and Honey at Plug In ICA, Winnipeg (2018), among others

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