Indigenous art at UBC Okanagan

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A new painting titled cax̌alqs — red dress by Syilx artist Sheldon Pierre Louis has been added to UBC Okanagan’s Public Art Collection. The painting depicts an Indigenous woman wearing a red dress and a face mask.

The Okanagan School of Education worked with Dr. Stacey Koosel, UBC Okanagan art gallery curator with the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies, to commission the new addition.

“We are excited to add this new work to our collection, as Sheldon Pierre Louis is an important Syilx artist with tremendous talent, bravery and influence,” says Koosel. “This is the first work of his that we have the honour of adding to our public art collection.”

The painting is located in Tower One on the third floor of the Engineering, Management and Education building on campus.

Sheldon Pierre Louis wants to take the opportunity to use his platform as a vessel for change. Art, he says, can be an educational tool, a conversational opening as well as a political weapon.

“As a Syilx artist I have always sought to use my art as a catalyst for discussion, to create spaces where uncomfortable issues can be brought forward into the societal dialogue to be given a voice,” he adds.