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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


December 1, 2001 - Issue 50


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Roy Henry Vickers

"Manyhands", "Orca", and "Eagle Full Circle" by Roy Henry Vickers}

Roy Henry Vickers has firmly established himself as one of Canada's premier artists. His paintings are held in museums and private collections here and abroad and his work is admired and owned by some of the world's most powerful people: Queen Elizabeth II, American President Bill Clinton and former Soviet leader Boris Yeltsin have been presented with Vickers' artworks. In addition, Roy has been recognized at numerous events for his talent and for his contribution to society; most recently, he was presented with the prestigious "Order of British Columbia" award.

Vickers was born in Greenville, British Columbia. His father was a Tsimshian fisherman; his mother, of British ancestry, was a school teacher. Roy has also lived in Hazelton, Tofino, and Victoria but he speaks with passion and affection of Kitkatla, an ancient Tsimshian village where the Vickers family resided for eight years. He studied at the Gitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art in Ksan and remains loyal to those traditions.

He studied at the Gitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art is Ksan and remains loyal to those traditions. Roy's artwork is bold, innovative, unique, and magical. He seeminly brings two worlds together, inviting the viewer to experience moments of serenity in nature, of ancestry, and of the coexistence of the past with the present. The vibrancy of colour and sharpness of lines point to the enthusiasm and respect with whick Roy perceives the extremely beautiful and rugged West Coast. We are reminded that although we may take pride in building spectacular bridges and towing cities, we and our creations are dwarfed by the power and beauty of the natural environment.

Roy presently works out of his studio in Brentwood Bay and travels frequently to his longhouse-style gallery in Tofino. It is in Eagle Aerie Gallery where Roy can often be found captivating audiences with traditional stories and anecdotes from his life experiences. Here, he shares the moments that inspired certain paintings, tells traditional native legends, relates stories of his adventures in the West Coast wildness, and speaks with humility of his recovery from addictions, a process that is soon to be shared nationally with the establishment of a holistic recovery centre called VisonQuest.

Roy speaks from the heart, especially when addressing issues such as family values, addictions, and child abuse, issues which affect all communities and individuals directly and indirectly.

To possess a Vickers' work of art is to possess a piece of the West Coast, past and present. It is to share in the life and gifts of a spirited man, and a man of spirit. May your Vickers' work be a blessing to you.

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  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.


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