|Coast Salish Artwork Installed in Vedder Roundabout||July 15, 2020|
Chilliwack, BC: A new art piece in the Vedder Road roundabout that celebrates the history of the Ts'elxwéyeqw Tribe and Stó:lō Nation is officially complete. The artwork was designed by Squiala First Nation Chief David Jimmie and Coast Salish artist Bonny Graham, in consultation with the Ts’elxwéyeqw Tribe and the Stó:lō Nation Chiefs Council.
The design features a Stó:lō/ Coast Salish traditional canoe atop an upper ring of stainless steel embossed with a salmon and wave design and the Halq'eméylem text “Ey kwesé é mi” with its English translation “It’s good that you are here…welcome”. The eight supporting posts are encased in paddles, with seven of the paddles bearing emblems to represent the seven Ts’elxwéyeqw communities, and the eighth holds the City of Chilliwack logo.
“Watching this piece come to life from the original vision and concept I drew on a piece of paper is amazing. The symbolism showing the importance of collaboration and connection to water through the salmon, canoe and paddles demonstrates that we are stronger when we work together, take care of what is in front of us and pull in the same direction. There are so many people that worked hard to make this happen and I would like to thank Bonny Graham for her beautiful art work, the City of Chilliwack’s Mayor and Council for their unwavering support and specifically Colette McDiarmid for overseeing the project. A beautiful addition to Chilliwack with deeper meaning as an art piece.”
“This piece is about more than art in a roundabout,” said Mayor Popove. “As we continue to build relationships with local First Nations, it is important that we use opportunities like this artwork to support truth and reconciliation.”
The budget for the Vedder Road roundabout artwork was included in the larger Vedder Bridge Replacement Project budget. The completion of this important piece marks the official completion of the Vedder Bridge Replacement Project.
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