Vancouver Park Board announces first artist in Indigenous cultural residency

Musqueam artist Chrystal Sparrow chosen for A-Frame residency at Second Beach

Vancouver Park Board Wednesday announced the first Indigenous artist chosen for a new residency at Second Beach.

Musqueam artist Chrystal Sparrow is the inaugural artist selected for the A-Frame Activation: Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Cultural Residency at Second Beach.

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“We are honoured to have an artist of Chrystal Sparrow’s ability and lineage to inaugurate our A Frame activation at Second Beach,” park board chair Stuart Mackinnon said in a press release. “This cultural residency will provide tremendous opportunities for the sharing of creative practices and deep wisdom handed down by generations of Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples on their unceded, traditional territories.”

Sparrow has a long family history of Coast Salish art and carving techniques, passed down through three generations from her late grandfather Edward Sparrow Sr., who painted stories and myths, and her late father Irving Sparrow, who was a master carver.

Her design style is described as “feminine Coast Salish”, sharing her experiences as a young woman among male artists in her family. She works in a range a media including painting, jewelry, leather and cedar weaving. Sparrow’s public work includes the design of the bronze medal for the HSBC Canada Sevens Rubgy Tournament, the Salish Sea Waters panel that hangs in Vancouver city hall and a Salish Beauty Cedar carving at UBC’s Thunderbird Arena that was carved for the 2010 Olympics.

The goal of the year-long artist residency is for a community member from the Musqueam, Squamish or Tsleil-Waututh Nations to work in a creative, community-engaged space in their unceded territory now known as Stanley Park.

During her residency, Sparrow aims to provide an interactive educational and experiential opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

The A Frame Fieldhouse at Second Beach will serve as her studio until next summer. Sparrow offers open studio and other learning opportunities to the public every Monday evening from 5:30 until 8:30 p.m. at 8701 Stanley Park Dr.


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