Potlatch 67–67: The Potlatch Ban - Then And Now – E-Publication

July 20 2018

Potlatch 67–67: The Potlatch Ban – Then and Now examines the impact of the attempted cultural genocide through the potlatch ban and the resilience of Indigenous peoples in maintaining and reclaiming traditional cultural practices and in creating new forms of cultural expression. 2018 marks the 67th year since the Canadian government’s Potlatch Ban was lifted after it was imposed on Indigenous people for 67 years. Nagezdi, Rob Everson Hereditary Chief of the Gigalgam Walas Kwagut, recognized many Canadians do not understand the history of Indigenous peoples. He envisioned an Indigenous art exhibition and cultural program that would powerfully engage the local community and fellow Canadians, both Indigenous and settler, about this shared history and the impact. In essence, this project provides the community with an artistic, metaphorical and cultural tour through artist stories that will echo the call for Hiłtsista’am – understanding that will lead to restorative work in our families and communities.

The Potlatch 67–67 exhibition Hiłtsista’am (The Copper Will Be Fixed) is comprised of diverse artworks created by Indigenous artists and cultural carriers living on the West Coast and Vancouver Island, who were invited to respond, through their creative practice, to the impact of the Potlatch Ban and its reinstatement within their lives, families, communities and cultural practices.

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