National Indigenous Peoples Day June 21st

Throughout the entire year, we wait in anticipation for the longest day of the year to begin our summer.  In particular, this recent spring has felt especially prolonged for everyone.

As we celebrate National Indigenous Peoples Day, we are reminded that it signifies not only the annual Summer Solstice, but it’s an important day to honour, appreciate and give voice to all First Nations peoples now and always.

The artist’s voice that we are highlighting this June 21st is April White:

“When I am creating art, I experience innate memories that deeply connect me to my cultural past. It is as if not my eyes, but only my brain is really doing the seeing. The feeling of this cerebral vision is supernatural … magical!” – April White

While viewing April’s work, you can see the magic in her creations, especially in her original watercolour paintings and graphics that depict her home of the Haida Gwaii Islands.

Beginning of the Trail, original painting, April White, Haida artist

“For my ancestors, the primary purpose of art is to unveil a parallel reality that is visible only in our minds—to share a glimpse of Supernatural Beings with the world of Human Beings.” – April White

April White, Haida artist

Iinang Xaadee—Herring People (illustrated in her print series shown above) play a vital role in the ecosystem. They nurture, feed, give of themselves to keep beings alive in all realms— undersea, earth, and sky. When balance prevails, Herring People gather to dance in their great longhouse in such great numbers and with such vigour that the atmosphere overhead reverberates with their excitement. Now, Human Beings see Herring solely as a resource, blinded, not seeing their true value, only seeing monetary gain at the expense of the whole.” – April White

Entirely self-taught, her natural inclination originates from her birthplace where being an artist is an esteemed profession.

We thank April White for her creative vision and dedication to the expression of her cultural heritage that continues to keep it alive.

To view her entire collection in our gallery, please click here.