Awards Celebrate Ongoing Legacy of BC Aboriginal Art

May 7, 2008

VANCOUVER - Drawing from the past to create a vision for the future is a theme common among the B.C. First Nations artists named today by Premier Gordon Campbell and Keith Mitchell, chair of the British Columbia Achievement Foundation, as recipients of the 2008 BC Creative Achievement Awards for Aboriginal Art.

"We are very proud to recognize the five recipients of the second BC Creative Achievement Award for Aboriginal Art," said Campbell. "From the master carvers to the emerging artist, not only is their work outstanding, but they are contributing to a legacy in their communities, throughout the province, and indeed to the world at large. British Columbia is proud to highlight these artists as playing an important role in the history and future of the province'ss Aboriginal art."

"We continue to see such a high degree of talent and diverse media represented in the works submitted by B.C. First Nations artists and designers," stated Mitchell, "The foundation is extremely pleased with the success of this second annual award."

The recipients of the second annual BC Creative Achievement Awards for Aboriginal Art are:
  • Bruce Alfred, Kwak waka'wakw, Namgis
  • Reg Davidson, Haida, Old Massett
  • Charles W. Elliott, Coast Salish, Tsartlip
  • Debra Sparrow, Coast Salish, Musqueam
  • Daniel Tom, St'at'ime, Seton Lake Band

The recipients of the 2008 BC Creative Achievement Awards for Aboriginal Art will be recognized at a ceremony on June 10, 2008 at the Pan Pacific Hotel in Vancouver. Each recipient will receive $5,000 and be granted the use of the British Columbia Creative Achievement Award seal to signify their creative excellence.

The recipients were selected by an independent jury chaired by board member Dr. Robert Belton, dean of creative and critical studies at UBC Okanagan. The jury was comprised of Stan Bevan, instructor and program director at the Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art, Northwest Community College in Terrace: Rose Spahan, artist and curator from Vancouver; Cathi Charles Wherry, arts program co-ordinator, First Peoples' Heritage, Language & Culture Council of Brentwood Bay; and Bill McLennan, curator, Pacific Northwest, UBC Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver.

The British Columbia Achievement Foundation is an independent foundation established and endowed by the Province of B.C. in 2003. The Creative Achievement Award for Aboriginal Art, inaugurated in 2007, is one of five initiatives of the foundation. The others are: the BC Community Achievement Awards, recognizing those who have made a significant contribution to their community; the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction, recognizing excellence in literary non-fiction; the BC Creative Achievement Award for applied artists and designers; and Time to Read: the BC Achievement Award for Early Literacy.


Contact: Nora Newlands
British Columbia Achievement Foundation
604-261-977 or 1-866-882-6088

Contact: Bridgitte Anderson
Press Secretary
Office of the Premier

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British Columbia Achievement Foundation
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