Mr. Rick Harry (Xwalacktun) has produced a prodigious body of artwork and an enduring legacy of goodwill. A highly skilled artist and teacher, Mr. Harry has made healing, growth, respect and giving back to the community central themes in his life.
Born and raised in Squamish, Mr. Harry was educated at Emily Carr College of Art and Capilano College before embarking on a 30-year career as an internationally recognized artist and cultural ambassador. He works in wood, glass and steel and is best known for his remarkable wood carvings.
Mr. Harry’s carvings can be seen in high-profile locations in the Lower Mainland. These are among more than 80 pieces he has carved for schools and other institutions throughout B.C. and around the world. Mr. Harry was the first Aboriginal artist chosen to receive a licence to produce 2010 Olympics-related designs.
With influence extending well beyond B.C.’s borders, Mr. Harry has been commissioned by galleries in New York and New Hampshire to produce carvings. He has been featured on high-profile television programs, including Sesame Street, and has – for a decade – conducted totem carving classes in Scotland, helping people there preserve their own heritage.
Over the years, Mr. Harry has become a highly acclaimed artist, a link between the Squamish Nation and other communities, and a great representative of British Columbia.