Arts & Culture
Connect with local artists and immerse yourself in the multicultural history that helps to influence the region’s art scene. Heritage and art often go hand in hand and much of the region’s art is a reflection of elements of the past with an entrepreneurial and innovative twist. The art here uses many different forms of media including glass, ceramic, wood, shells, soapstone, plaster, and traditional metals such as copper.
Some artists practice the crafts of their cultural heritage, such as jewelry making, while others are using their talents and imaginations to explore new avenues. From masks and pottery to custom guitars, there is something for every person to connect with. Campbell River embraces its art community and proudly displays both purchased and donated artwork for culture seeking visitors to explore and appreciate.
Chris Istace shares his experience about culture and artistic impressions in Campbell River here;
” Wiwek̓a̱m is the name given to the city by the Kwakwaka’wakw first nations people whom’s territory is where the now commonly referred to Campbell River sits. When you first visit the region you will immediately notice the connection of the two worlds coming together and the tribute to the original people of the area.
One of the greatest treasures of Vancouver Island may very well be the wild places. That being said, the Coastal First Nations peoples are the rich spiritual cultures whose unceded lands we call home. We had the chance to visit the Carving Shack in Campbell River owned by Bill Henderson of the Weiwaikum Tribe.
Bill is the son of Late Chief Sam Henderson , a great man that escaped the cultural pressure of early Canadian Culture to become a protector and preserver of their heritage. Now his son Bill carries on that legacy alongside his family of carvers including his cousin Greg who gave us a tour of their carving workshop.
The Hendersons carve with traditional hand made tools in the methods passed down from family member to family member. The masks, totems, paddles and more that they create speak to the strong connection to the land, water and animals we share this region with.
I had the opportunity to learn more about the history of the region recently as well as explore and experience the sights and sounds over a period of 4 days. Elated and feeling truly fortunate to be immersed into such a special place. “