Mir Centre hosts internationally acclaimed artist/author

By Contributor
September 23rd, 2009

Selkirk College’s next Mir Centre for Peace lecture will feature one of the descendents of the last First Nations to live at the confluence of the Kootenay and Columbia Rivers—Lawney Reyes.

Reyes is the grandson of Alex Christian, otherwise known as “White Grizzly” among the Sinixt First Nations of the Kootenays. He is the author of a trilogy on First Nations history; the moving White Grizzly Bear’s Legacy: Learning to be Indian (2002), which traces the life of Alex Christian and his family as they become the last First Nations to live at the confluence of the Kootenay and Columbia Rivers.

Despite increased acculturation and loss of heritage, Reyes was able to build a life that honored the past while engaging with the present.

“I recalled with deep respect the lifestyle of the People, the Sin-Aikst (Sinixt), and the great adventure of their experiences as they met the challenges of survival. Memories of the old days embraced me. I became a part of the past as I remembered the Way.” [from White Grizzly Bear’s Legacy: Learning to be Indian]

Reyes is a Sinixt, or Lake, Indian from the Colville Confederated Tribes. He grew up on the Colville Reservation, attended the Chemawa Indian boarding school, and lived in the Tacoma, Wa., area before moving to Seattle. 

He is the former art director for the Seafirst Corporation and a member of the Seattle Arts Commission. He is a recipient of the Peace and Friendship Award for Contributions to American Indian Art and the Governor’s Art Award in sculpture. His sculpture has won numerous awards and is held in collections in Europe, Asia, and throughout the U.S.

On Oct. 1, from 7-9 p.m. at Selkirk College’s Mir Centre for Peace, artist, sculptor, painter, designer and author Lawney Reyes will discuss the knowledge and insight that might be gained from cultural conflict.

Suggested donation for admission is $10.

For more information on the Mir Centre for Peace Lecture Series, visit selkirk.ca/mir/campaign/.

Categories: Arts and Culture


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