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Xwalacktun’s Art is a Call to Find Balance – ECUAD

May 12, 2022

The accomplished artist and educator is a 2022 recipient of an Emily Carr University Honorary Degree.

Xwalacktun, also known as Rick Harry, believes that art was gifted to him at a young age by the creator. With ancestry from Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) and Kwakwakw’wakw Nation (in Alert Bay), Xwalacktun mastered his skills and education with the help of Emily Carr and Capilano University but credits his creativity as a gift from the natural world.

“My art just comes together. With nature, with the ancestors, with community, within my own self, you know, it kind of emerges out of that,” he tells me “I want to give it life. It’s not just a nice piece of artwork to me. We never had a word for artwork. It was the way of our life. It had to blossom out of us to tell a story—a story to help myself or others around me, or the ones that are not here yet.”

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