Blog Archives

Renowned B.C. Indigenous artist Beau Dick has died

Beau Dick regalia

Kwakwaka’wakw artist Beau Dick in traditional regalia.

‘Namgis artist was known for his mask carvings and as an advocate for Aboriginal rights

By Megan Thomas, CBC News, March 28, 2017

World-renowned B.C. Indigenous artist Beau Dick has died.

Dick was a master carver and hereditary chief from the ‘Namgis First Nation in Alert Bay, just off the coast of northern Vancouver Island.

He was known for his mask carvings and as an advocate for Aboriginal rights. Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

Copper broken on Parliament Hill in First Nations shaming ceremony

The copper in Saskatchewan, June 2014, during its cross country journey to Ottawa.

The copper in Saskatchewan, June 2014, during its cross country journey to Ottawa.

Western Canada First Nations representatives want government to address troubled relationship

By Martha Troian, CBC News, Juyl 27, 2014

A traditional shaming ceremony held today on the steps of Parliament Hill is meant to challenge the federal government to renew its troubled relationship with First Nations, says a prominent West Coast artist.

Beau Dick, 59, a master carver and hereditary chief from the Namgis First Nation, says the ceremony involves cutting or breaking a large copper shield.

“Breaking copper is a challenge, it is also a shaming, and it is also about banishment,” Dick explained. Read the rest of this entry

First Nations Target Copper Shaming Ceremony At Canadian Government

Awalaskenis copper cutting 1by Stephen Hui, Georgia StraightJuly 3, 2014

When Haida copper is smashed on Parliament Hill on July 27, the ancient shaming ceremony won’t just be sending a message to the federal government.

On the first day of the Awalaskenis II journey from Vancouver to Ottawa, Kwakwaka’wakw hereditary chief and carver Beau Dick told the Georgia Straight that he sees performing the copper cutting ritual as a “challenge” to all Canadians as well.

“It’s about consciousness and about waking up to realize that, as human beings, we have a lot of things to sort out,” Dick said on Wednesday (July 2), as he marched with about 40 people on West Broadway. Read the rest of this entry

First Nations ceremonial shaming rite targeted at federal government

Kwakwaka'wakw carver Beau Dick with a copper and talking stick.

Kwakwaka’wakw carver Beau Dick with a copper and talking stick.

By Carlito Pablo, The Georgia Straight, June 25, 2014

An ancient First Nations ritual steeped in symbolism is going to take place in the nation’s capital this summer.

A copper shield will be smashed on Parliament Hill, an act believed never to have been done before in Ottawa. Called copper cutting, the ceremonial shaming practice will evoke what many consider to be a broken relationship between the federal government and Canada’s aboriginal people.

“Our coppers are a symbol of justice, a symbol of truth, a symbol of balance,” according to Beau Dick, a renowned carver from Vancouver Island’s Namgis First Nation. Read the rest of this entry

Beau Dick Copper Cutting Ceremony in Victoria to “Shame” Government

Namgis hereditary chief Beau Dick walking to Victoria legislature.

Namgis hereditary chief Beau Dick walking to Victoria legislature.

Scores of Native people rallied at the Victoria legislature on Sunday, Feb 10, 2013, to attend a copper cutting ceremony performed by Namgis hereditary chief Beau Dick.  A world renowned carver, Dick began his journey on Feb 2 from his hometown of Alert Bay, located near northern Vancouver Island.  On the walk to Victoria, Dick and his supporters drew attention to the destructive impact of fish farms in the region, stopping at supermarkets that sell farmed salmon as well as fish farms. Read the rest of this entry