“Redefining The Perspective” by the Indigenous Resurgence Project in the KAC Alcove and Vault Galleries

25 June 2024 10:00 am

“Redefining The Perspective” by the Indigenous Resurgence Project in the KAC Alcove and Vault Galleries

Mediums: Digital, Acrylic, Metal, and Various Materials

Artist Reception: Saturday, June 1st, 1pm to 3pm

Exhibit Statement:

The Indigenous Resurgence project works with artists of any medium and practice, putting emphasis on the diversity of each craft. Being an Indigenous artist isn’t about adhering to a certain style or form – it’s about reclaiming our voice through creativity and storytelling and about sharing our perspective. We need to redefine what Indigenous art means, and our perception of it. This exhibition is one small piece in that process
This collective exhibition is a way to show the unique and intricate diversity of artists in the area. Indigenous artists and the pieces they create come in many different shapes, sizes, and designs – some following familiar patterns of traditional practices, and others recontextualizing art in new and modern styles.

This exhibition features several different Indigenous artists, each with different styles of art and varying backgrounds. The artists in this exhibition are from varying levels of practice and a diverse age range. Some have been practicing art for years, and others are only starting to create works.

This exhibition is a way to not only celebrate everyone’s creative process but to share the vast spectrum of art and creativity. Each artist shares a piece of themself and their voice in the work they create. 

Artist Bios:

Charlayna Napoleon (T’it’q’et First Nations): Charlayna Napoleon is a Queer Indigenous Artist whose creative pursuits intertwine the realms of drawing, painting, and short film. With a boundless imagination and an unwavering passion for storytelling, Charlayna crafts captivating narratives that blur the lines between reality and fantasy. Their artwork, characterized by vibrant colours and intricate details, invites viewers into surreal worlds of fiction. Charlayna’s work has been exhibited in galleries around Kamloops BC, leaving a lasting impression on audiences who are drawn to their unique blend of visual storytelling. Currently a dedicated art student at Thompson Rivers University, Charlayna is immersed in a world of exploration and experimentation, honing their craft while delving into the depths of artistic expression. After already completing their Visual Arts Certificate and Visual Arts Diploma they now work towards obtaining their BFA in Spring 2025. Alongside their studies, Charlayna not only creates captivating works but also serves as an art instructor at the Kamloops Art Gallery. They host a variety of workshops where they share their knowledge with eager learners, nurturing their artistic talents and fostering their creativity. Charlayna remains committed to sharing their love of art with others, leaving a lasting mark on the art community.
Mercedes Paluck (First Nations – Tl’azt’en Nation/Dakelh territory): Mercedes Paluck is an emerging interdisciplinary artist that has spent her years growing up in Kamloops BC. She is a member of Tl’azt’en Nation; a community that resides along the banks of Stuart Lake in the Dakelh territory. Recently she has started building a connection with her Indigenous heritage and strives to integrate this new relationship collectively through her artistic expression. Currently attending the NIPAT Program held by the En’owkin Centre based in Penticton, Mercedes is exploring new mediums that complement her interests and talents. Her experiences as an Indigenous woman, as well as a longing to reconnect with the land, are themes she often conveys through her work.
Michael Serroul (St’at’imc): Kalhwá7acw Mimxat nskwatsitsa, T’it’qet St’at’imc meckan. My sám7a name is Michael Serroul, and my St’at’imc name is Mimxat which means little bear. I am from the T’it’qet band on the St’at’imc Nation; currently living on the traditional territory of Taleil-Waututha and Squamish nations. I have been making art basically my whole life, this has included several murals and commissions. My main mediums are painting, and drawing. However, throughout my career, I’ve experimented with sculpting, pyrography, printmaking, photography and music. My style is made up of many elements of different traditional Indigenous art across both Canada and the US. My family is from the frog clan, meaning we can adapt to any situation, I believe this is shown in the ethos of my style. I wouldn’t consider it traditional, it’s a modern and urban Indigenous perspective on our art, an evolution. I have had many mentors over the years to help shape my style; including people from my home community, people of Métis descent, and people who are trained in traditional Coast Salish as well as Haida art. I’ve learned a lot from street art and graffiti, and in contrast, I’ve also learned a lot from classical art and general art history.
Tammy LaFleur (Metis): Born in Northern BC, Prince George in 1969. I was raised in the Kamloops & Shuswap area. I discovered through my connection to spirit, that I can express feelings and my belief of energy flow with painting the visions that come with my heart-centred connection. After a single paint night at the Chase Library in 2019, my art passion flourished. I have dreams of where I fly among the mountains, and when I wake, my paintbrush in my hand is when I am home again. I have always enjoyed working with plants, being surrounded by animals, and being outside with the trees. By a flowing creek, with birds in the trees is where I am most happy. My grade 10 ceramics teacher was my first inspiration in supporting my vision to create my first large ceramic vase which I still have today. Art is a platform for me to truly express emotional feelings, that words sometimes can’t. Art is the gift of unity & human compassion for hope & courage.
Kara-lianne Johnson (Gitxsan): I remember as a child I use to love art so much but when I got into high school I was discouraged from pursuing art because of our small town art teacher. I felt like I was not getting the help I needed in the class and at the time I did not know how to vocalize it. Then, pursuing a career in healthcare and raising a family placed this passion further on hold. It wasn’t until recently that I began to pursue my passion once again. I decided I no longer wanted to wait for a mentor to teach me what it means to be an Indigenous artist but to define myself as an Indigenous artist on my own. I am authentically me and have the spirit of my ancestors to guide me. I am now learning Pacific Northwest form line from books by Bill Holm and Robert E. Stanley Sr. I also draw inspiration from other artists’ work online including artists from my hometown such as Trevor Angus and Roy Henry Vickers. I am also a self-taught beader and learned how to do so from social media platforms like YouTube. I also follow a group on Facebook to get help from other beaders as needed. Being an urban “away from home” Gitxsan woman has taught me how to take more initiative as an artist. Life is too short to not pursue your dreams and to wait for a mentor, sometimes you have to grab life by the reigns on your own.
Teresa Rush (Secwepemc): Teresa was born and raised in Kamloops. Her mother is Secwépemc from Kamloops and her father is from Glasgow, Scotland. She moved to the lower mainland for 30 years where she was one of the first female firefighters in the lower mainland and left the fire service as a Lieutenant with a medal for 20 years of exemplary service. Since returning to Kamloops, Teresa has volunteered with RAFT (Refugees and Friends Together) and with the Special Olympics. She is currently a member of the Kamloops Arts and Crafts Club and the Kamloops Courthouse Gallery and Artisan Market. Teresa draws from her roots in Kamloops and her Indigenous and Scottish culture. She specializes in wire jewelry, and photography but her medium is always evolving. Teresa is inspired by the vast natural landscape in Kamloops and enjoys sharing it with others. She believes we belong to the land and uses many local, natural materials in her art. She leads by example, challenges the status quo, and continues to show up and take space. She balances powerful warrior energy with gentle soul artist energy by honouring her past and leaning into her soft feminine energy.
Gina Bussidor (Sayisi Dene First Nation): I’m excited to share with people, my love for photography, and capturing the most memorable moments! I grew up in the southern MB prairies and moved to BC in 2013 and absolutely love it here. I found my way back to photography after going through school for and working in trades as a carpenter. I realized that art and beauty were missing in the profession I chose and decided it was time to transition out of carpentry. I revitalized my creative expression through photography, picking the camera back up, I had my first camera when I was 8 and I’m so glad I rediscovered my passion for it as my career. I love being able to express and share how I see the world through my photography. There is so much beauty to be seen and each person has their own voice and story to tell, I love being part of that process of being able to help bring those stories to life and create a visual voice for people. I’m located in Kamloops, the perfect location surrounded by many beautiful areas of BC. I enjoy promoting small businesses and tourism that support these areas. I love capturing genuine moments of bliss happiness, simplicity and raw beauty. Adventure and exploring of local trails, kayaking and being in nature is something that is close to my heart, I find the natural world inspiring and breathtaking. I love being able to capture a glimpse of it through my lens.
Minnie Kenoras (Secwepemc): My name is Minnie Kenoras Grinder. My Mom, Melanie Saxy Campbell and my Dad Johnathan Grinder resided in Big Bar, where we still have a family homestead. Since I was a little girl I have seen everything as art, as beautiful. The water, land, sun and moon and all the animals. I have created art with things from Mother Earth since I was young. Today at the age of 86, I teach my art using mediums from Mother Earth. I see the beauty in my people.
Shannon Kilroy (Secwepemc): Shannon Kilroy is a member of the Lower Nicola Band. Shannon has been designing clothes since the 1990s. Her preference is to utilize raw silk and hemp materials in her designs.
Shay Paul (Secwepemc): Shay is a 24-year-old Secwepemc multi-media artist and community organizer residing in the unceded territory of Secwepemc’ulucw. She uses her artwork to empower her voice and her passion, creating striking visuals in several different mediums and techniques. Shay’s work is an amalgamation of all of her passions: fantasy characters, plant and botanical pieces, Indigenous pop culture and modernization, and anything else that strikes her fancy. Over the years, Shay has practiced in many different mediums, from traditional inkwork to graphic design, and applies many of these skills to youth workshop facilitation and sharing the experiences she’s faced along her creative journey with others. Shay works across communities to support and advocate for artists. She founded the Indigenous Resurgence Project in 2022 and uses the platform to support and provide resources to artists through collaborative efforts with other arts organizations, such as this exhibition. Through her work supporting artists, Shay is a member of the City of Kamloops Arts & Culture Board and the regional director of the Thompson-Okanagan for Arts BC.

The show will be exhibited in the Alcove & Vault Galleries from June 1 to 25, 2024

View their upcoming show in our online gallery here!