Indigenous Summer Arts Studio opens at Royal BC Museum

July 4, 2019

VICTORIA, BC–Visitors to Victoria will be able to include a stop at the Indigenous Summer Arts Studio when they visit the Royal BC Museum from July 4, 2019 to mid-September, 2019. The studio—located next to Wawadiťła (Mungo Martin House) in Thunderbird Park—is a place where Indigenous artists will be able to create, share, learn, network with peers and meet guests from around the world.

The Indigenous Summer Arts Studio program is the result of discussions with Indigenous artists during consultations on the renewal of the Thunderbird Park Carving Studio. The studio will include both mentoring and emerging Indigenous artists.

“With the new Studio program, the Royal BC Museum has created a temporary space where emerging artists can connect with senior artists and arts mentors,” says Lou-ann Neel, Repatriation Specialist at the Royal BC Museum. “For more than 50 years, this was an important function of the original Carving Studio, and artists at the consultations felt it was important to re-establish a space for urban Indigenous artists who might not otherwise have access to mentors.”

The Indigenous Summer Arts Studio space is an 18-by-30-foot open-sided tent, with a wooden house-front façade designed by Sarah Jim of the Tseycum First Nation.  The tent has been loaned to the museum by Nuu-chah-nulth artist Hjalmer Wenstob.

Each week, from Wednesday to Friday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, the Indigenous Summer Arts Studio will host up to four artists, representing and practicing a range of artistic practices including: carving (wood, bone); painting; cedar-bark weaving; wool weaving; beadwork; drum-making; jewellery engraving; leather/hide work; singing; storytelling; and textiles/sewing.

Indigenous artists were invited to be a part of the Summer Arts Studio with a call to mentoring and emerging indigenous artists and will receive and honorarium for their time at the studio.  More information is available at 


About the Royal BC Museum

The Royal BC Museum explores the province’s human history and natural history, advances new knowledge and understanding of BC, and provides a dynamic forum for discussion and a place for reflection. The museum and archives celebrate culture and history, telling the stories of BC in ways that enlighten, stimulate and inspire. Located in Victoria on the traditional territory of the Lekwungen (Songhees and Xwsepsum Nations), we are a hub of community connections in BC–onsite, offsite and online–taking pride in our collective histories.



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Julie Ovenell
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