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Carver Beau Dick made a stop on his journey

A copper shield on the ground is symbolically cut into pieces as part of a shaming ritual revived by artist Beau Dick (right), who stopped in Chilliwack on his journey to Ottawa. - CHRIS GADSDEN/ PROGRESS
A copper shield on the ground is symbolically cut into pieces as part of a shaming ritual revived by artist Beau Dick (right), who stopped in Chilliwack on his journey to Ottawa.
— image credit: CHRIS GADSDEN/ PROGRESS

Artist Beau Dick is reviving the practice of copper cutting.

It’s a graphic symbol of the broken relationship and the anguish between  aboriginal people and the federal government.

His message was also a reminder about the need for clean water and protection of Mother Earth.

He stopped in Chilliwack recently at UFV on July 5, sharing aspects of indigenous culture and storytelling, and giving locals a chance to touch the copper pieces.

He’s a traditional Namgis carver and activist originally from a Kwakwaka’wakw village, who revived the copper cutting ritual first last year, as a form of protest.

From a young age the artist was influenced by the traditional carving of both his grandfather and father, with whom he assisted in carving one of the world’s tallest totem poles in Alert Bay.

Dick is currently an artist in residence at UBC. He is heading to Ottawa with the copper shield.

 

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