Outstanding BC First Nations artists honoured with awards

September 29, 2017

VANCOUVER – The BC Achievement Foundation announced today the recipients of the 2017 BC Creative Achievement Award for First Nations Art.

"By honouring the best in First Nations art, we celebrate the inheritance of a rich cultural tradition," said Scott McIntyre, Foundation Chair. "The 2017 award recipients are exemplary standard-bearers for all BC artists, and provide inspiration for those who will follow."

Delores Purdaby, a master basketry artist from the Secwepemc-Neskonlith community, will receive this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award, an honour bestowed on individuals who have made a profound contribution to their First Nations culture.

Following the establishment of the Crabtree McLennan Emerging Artist Award at last year’s presentation ceremony, Danika Naccarella – an emerging Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw and Nuxalk artist – will be honoured as the inaugural recipient of this award.

The annual BC Creative Achievement Awards for First Nations Art celebrate artistic excellence in traditional, contemporary or media art. The 2017 recipients chosen by the jury panel are:

Corey Bulpitt – Haida
Kevin Cranmer – Kwakwaka’wakw-‘Namgis / Mamalilikala
Steven Davies – Snuneymuxw
Danika Naccarella – Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw / Nuxalk
Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas – Haida-Canadian

The 11th annual celebration of the awards will take place later this fall at a ceremony in Vancouver.

McIntyre acknowledged the ongoing commitment of Polygon Homes as the lead sponsor of the award program, "We thank Polygon Homes, its Chair, Michael Audain, and its President, Neil Chrystal, for their tremendous support of the BC Creative Achievement Awards for First Nations Art."

Members of the jury panel included: Sonny Assu, a Ligwilda’xw / Kwakwaka’wakw interdisciplinary, award-winning artist and past recipient; Nika Collison, Haida artist and curator of the Haida Gwaii Museum at Kay Llnagaay; and Xwalacktun, an internationally recognized and award-winning Coast Salish / Squamish / Kwakwaka’wakw artist and past recipient. Special advisors to the jury include Emily Carr University Aboriginal Program Director, Brenda Crabtree, a member of the Spuzzum Band with both Nlaka’pamux and Sto:lo ancestry; and the UBC Museum of Anthropology’s Curator Emeritus, Bill McLennan.

The BC Achievement Foundation is an independent foundation established and endowed by the Province of BC in 2003 to celebrate community service, arts, humanities and enterprise. For information on British Columbia Achievement Foundation, visit www.bcachievement.com

Detailed information about the 2017 recipients and a list of past winners is posted on the foundation’s website at www.bcachievement.com.

Cathryn Wilson
Executive Director
BC Achievement Foundation

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