We offer four main conservation education programs: Water Wise, Waste Wise, Watershed Health, and Sustainable Life. Within these programs we support children, the general public, and businesses in the form of classroom sessions, field trips, community events, workshops, business coaching, brochures, digital campaigns, newspaper columns, signage, and many other educational activities!
We work within the community, with the community, to maintain and enhance the health of the environment as the basis of a strong economy and vital society.
- -To provide conservation education to all sectors of the Cariboo Chilcotin public with the aim of changing behaviours to protect our natural environment;
- -To heighten awareness around issues affecting land, water, air, and climate;
- -To inspire stewardship and careful exploration of the Cariboo Chilcotin region via species and ecosystems education; and
- -To leverage our stewardship efforts by taking action and working with like-minded partners in our region
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2003
Funded by: Communities in Bloom with special thanks to City of Williams Lake, Rotary of Williams Lake, Canadian Tire (WL), Kal Tire, Tire Craft, Big O, Bee Jay’s Towing, Big B Tire, OK Tire, Fountain Tire and Sam’s Restaurant
Communities in Bloom had just opened the River Valley Trail. Dwayne wanted to bring an image of the trail to downtown. He found a beautiful spot, photographed it thoroughly, and then painted it as accurately as he could. You can look for the exact spot on the trail by entering at the Mackenzie access point, and then turning left (south) on the trail. Passerby, Ralph Heitman, suggested to Dwayne that he should paint a deer in the bushes. Dwayne did so, and also added a fawn. Now, over a decade later, trees have grown up in front of the painted deer and fawn. You can still peek through and see them – which Dwayne invites school kids to do when he takes classes on mural tours. The mural depicts a specific spot on the River Valley Trail, a 12km pedestrian and biking path that runs from Williams Lake to the Fraser River.
Dwayne says this mural is all about light, the light of an single moment in time. This is his most nature-focussed mural and he has used an impressionist style. Dwayne painted this one all on his own.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2004
Funded by: The Williams Lake Tribune
Clive and Irene Stangoe purchased Williams Lake The Tribune from George Renner in 1950 and published the paper for the next two decades from the lower floor of their home situated on Oliver Street. Clive was the publisher and Irene was the community editor. In 1973 The Black family bought The Tribune and moved it to its current location on 1st Ave. North. The Williams Lake Tribune was the first paper purchased by the now huge community newspaper chain Black Press. The cowboy silhouette is from the Tribune Paper’s logo. The Tribune wanted its original location, the Stangoe home, painted in the mural along with cows to symbolize Williams Lake’s western culture. Dwayne pulled the 75th issue of the paper and combined the real content of that issue with his made-up story about Communities in Bloom – a tip-of-the-hat to the organization that initiated the mural program.
The first challenge with this wall was the vent that spewed out black residue. Dwayne decided to cover the vent with the dark figure in silhouette. His next challenge was to make the mural both nostalgic and modern. He achieved this by painting the old Tribune building in a realistic style, and painting a larger-than-life paper sporting a 3D page curl. Dwayne had help from his son Steven who painted the cows, trees, and the silhouette.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2007
Funded by: Communities in Bloom, City Vacuum, Paint Depot, City of Wiliams Lake in recognition of Doug and Floris Martineau
Communities in Bloom asked Dwayne to paint a ranch scene, and he wanted to depict an old-fashioned branding. Dwayne painted from photos he’d taken years ago at a Dorsey Ranch branding. The scene reminds him of Texas Fosbery’s Ranch, by Lee’s Corner out west, a place Dwayne spent a lot of time as a child. Dwayne says if it weren’t for his first horse Knothead, an $85 gift from his father, he would have been a cowboy. Fortunately for us, Knothead lived up to his name and Dwayne got so frustrated with the horse that he chose a career in the arts instead. Dwayne says these days only the small ranches brand like this and that, for the most part, the whole branding culture is gone. The modern ranches tag their cattle on the ear. This ranch scene is inspired by the Dorsey Ranch by Anahim Lake in Tsilhqot’in territory “out west” along highway 20. An old fashioned “branding” is taking place, where cowboys heat the branding irons in the fire and seer the cattle in the spring. The boy sitting on the back of the truck is Dwayne as a child, enjoying the company of a ranch hand he remembers that always found time to play guitar and tell stories when there was fencing work to be done.
The texture and shape of the wall dictated the mural design. On the left where the wall is high subjects are close to life-sized. On the right, where the wall is shorter, subjects are receding into the distance. Dwayne and Steven spent a lot of time painting the ranch’s ground, working to achieve the illusion of it falling back. The wall had been freshly stuccoed which made painting in textures quite challenging. Dwayne’s son Steven helped by painting the trees and the ground.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2003
Funded by: Communities in Bloom, City of Williams Lake
Communities in Bloom (CIB) asked Dwayne for a mural of local industry. Dwayne chose the four industries depicted, and CIB approved his design. The cowboy and the horse are not based on specific individuals to give a timeless and universal feel to the figures. End of the Roll had just moved into the building and they were happy to see the mural going up. The mural depicts Williams Lake’s four industries, from left to right: Ranching, tourism/rodeo, logging and mining.
Dwayne’s challenge was to combine such different scenes into a single congruous work. He wanted to give each industry its own space and tie them into a shared experience, a goal and a challenge that faces Williams Lake’s diverse community. To achieve his goal, Dwayne focused on areas of colour, thinking in blocks and shapes rather than image details. The rider and horse figure work as a separation between our oldest industry on the left, and our two more modern industries on the right, the cowboy embodying the courage and resilience that has pulled our community through the ups and downs that come with a natural resource-based economy. Dwayne had some help with the cows from his son Steven.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2018
Funder: City of Williams Lake
This display is made up of three murals located in the foyer of the Cariboo Memorial Arena Complex. Each mural celebrates the rich hockey history of our area, and the importance of sports to building a healthy community. The three teams depicted; Alkali Lake Braves – circa 1931, the Williams Lake Stampeders – circa 1961, and the Williams lake Mustangs – circa 1982, were selected for both their accomplishments, as well as their time frame between them to show how long of a time hockey has been played in the area. Many of the players were imported in and have stayed on and have become important leaders and businessmen in the community.
Painting so many faces together proved to be a challenge. One of the most intriguing parts were to get the head sizes for every one correct. One does not realize that the people in the back row will be just a tiny bit smaller than in the front. One size does not fit all!
The Realm of Toys has everything to spark the imagination! Toys and crafts fill every inch, while The Nerd Corner is packed with geeky goodness for all ages. Need a place to party for up to 8 kids? Check out our Party Parlour for birthdays!
SMALL BUSINESS RESOURCE CENTRE
Workshop & Training
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The Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society is a BC registered non-profit, operating under contract by the Cariboo Regional District and the City of Williams Lake. CCACS manages the Central Cariboo Arts Centre, distributes project grants, support grants, and Fee-for-Service funding, and offers other resources to artists and arts groups in Williams Lake and Central Cariboo areas D, E, and F. CCACS also manages the Central Cariboo Arts Centre, maintains an up-to-date calendar of arts and culture events in the Central Cariboo, and operates the Performances in the Park concert series.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2002
Funded by: Communities in Bloom, City of Williams Lake
Initially, this mural met with some resistance from the Firehall. The Fire Chief thought the mural would be flowers and he wanted none of it. Half way through the mural creation, the firemen decided they liked it. When the mural was completed they all posed proudly for a picture in front of it. The firefighters were later inspired to paint the door in the wall red to match the mural. It is fitting that the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society now inhabits this building and its past use as a firehall will not be forgotten thanks to Dwayne’s vivid mural. Depicted here is a history of three eras of fire-fighting. On the right, we see a steam-powered water pumper connected to a horse buggy. Centered is the large spool for water hoses. The men would push the hand cart to the fire where they would connect to a water truck or to a water hydrant. On the left is a modern-day fire truck beside fire fighters in action wearing modern-day gear. The fire itself was inspired by the Tony’s Leather fire (1950) downtown Williams Lake.
Dwayne’s challenge here was to blend eras in a readable way. Notice the illusion he has created of the wall falling and the fire is coming towards the viewer. Dwayne worked closely on this mural with eldest daughter, Denica Davis, who was at the time an aspiring young artist.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2011
Funded bu: Cariboo Central Arts and Culture Society and BC’s Community Tourism Opportunities program via the Cariboo Coast Tourism Association, and with the support of the Cariboo Regional District and City of Williams Lake
This is a mural where you can find new hidden details each time you look. Notice the sky is a river, look for where the water runs backward, find the impossible angles. There are hands throughout the design, creative hands holding and gasping and building. The large silhouette figure is abstract to portray an idea coming into the world, cradled by an artist’s hands. This mural shows ideas becoming art. It celebrates how an artist’s hands birth ideas that transcend the physical world.
This mural was created using Dwayne’s usual method. He designs the image, then puts the image over a photo of the wall on his computer, then puts a graph on the actual wall and blocks in the design using the graph. However, Dwayne and Steven soon went “off book” with this creative process. An error during graphing made the main figure in silhouette far larger than intended. Happy with the effect of the error, the artists found themselves inspired to add faces in the cloud, include hidden animals, and delight in painting details that can only exist in an imagined world. Dwayne worked with his son Steven on this mural. The wording on the mural’s commemoration plaque is written by Steven.
Artist: Al-Lisa Tresierra McKay, 2018 – with support from Davis Arts
Funded by: Downtown Williams Lake/City of Williams Lake
This mural depicts how all life comes from great mystery and then goes back into great mystery. Spirit must be honoured to keep the balance of life and tangible form. So many are disconnected from our true connection to spirit and the natural world. This mural is a prayer for the town to be in balance. This mural combines First Nations culture with the feminine spirit and the importance of salmon, the sun, and animals of the region.
Kucwelcken means Backbone in Secwepemc language. When Al-Lisa was invited to paint this mural, she prayed for a vision to help guide her art. She knew she wanted to honour the First Nations, the feminine, and the salmon. The prayer that came through did so in slow drops and stages. It began with the river mother, the salmon, the sun, and then the animals. Al-Lisa painted gold symbols around the spiral in the sun. It is interesting because the metalic paint is olive green without direct sunlight, some angles make it seem as though it is invisible and when the sun is directly across, the whole painted sun glows shimmering gold. Al-Lisa Tresierra McKay of Miss White Spider Arts designed this mural. She had the help of Dwayne Davis and Dwayne’s son Steven to help her put her “little painting on a very big wall”.
35 years as your independent bookstore.
Located in the heart of Downtown Williams Lake, The Open Book has been family owned and operated since 1983. Our customers’ love for the printed word means that we’re still here doing what we love. We have over 16,000 titles in stock, as well as calendars, magazines, jigsaw puzzles, greeting cards, gifts, and more! Stop in for a visit or shop online and pick your order up in the store. We can’t wait to see you!
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2014
Funded by: Downtown Williams Lake BIA and City of Williams Lake on Williams Lake’s 85th Anniversary
Dwayne wanted to paint a scene from a roadhouse which were vital centers during the goldrush era before the railroad. Dwayne says the stage coaches could only make 20-30 miles a day, so we had a lot of these roadhouses dotting the gold rush trail. They provided a post office, café, and hotel services to gold miners. Towns like Williams Lake grew up around the roadhouses. The practice of the day was for gold miners to stop and get rest and supplies on the way to Barkerville and then, depending on their luck, they would return to the roadhouse to either buy it, or work there until they could afford to get back on the goldrush trail. This is the scene from a typical roadhouse, a stopping place for stage coaches on their way to and from the Barkerville gold rush. The mural is dedicated to the many posts that serviced the road-weary travellers of the 1860’s to the mid 1900’s from Lillooet to the Cariboo to Barkerville. The car and truck are from the 1920’s. The man on the horse is Antoine Boitanio (1880’s – 1940’s) who was born on the Alkali Lake Reserve and was instrumental in starting the Williams Lake Stampede. Boitanio Mall, Boitanio Park and Boitanio Lake all bear his hame. The man smoking is Charlie Twann, honoured in 2006 by BC Cowboy Hall of Fame after 70 years of working on cattle ranches. When Dwayne was a child he saw Twann’s photo and he always remembered it – he painted Twann’s photo into this mural because his pose reminded Dwayne of all the Tsilhqot’in cowboys. The man in the middle is the property owner’s dad who is still alive and well and living in the area.
Sepia tones are used to capture the feel of a time long ago. Dwayne used the truck and car to anchor the foreground of the mural in the actual modern-day parking lot, to give the viewer the impression that one could step into the past and join the gold rush fever. Dwayne had help from his uncle Stew Davis, who is not an artist but was willing to do blocking-in work. Artist Elizabeth Hoelderl contributed her skills to parts of the pick-up and the car wheels.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2015
Funded by: Crosina Family, Downtown Williams Lake BIA, City of Williams Lake, Cariboo Regional District
The mural is on the wall of a building owned by Louis James Crosina and Clara Anna Noble’s great-granddaughter, Anita Crosina. This was a fun mural to paint because many people stopped by to tell Dwayne and Steven their memories of the Crosina family and of that era of local history. Back in 1963 Lil died unexpectedly of a heart attack while working in the 153 mile store, after which the door was locked and was never re-opened. The store has remained undisturbed, just as Lil left it, and is now a time capsule and a treasure for historians. There is a plan to move the 153 mile store and contents to downtown Williams Lake where it can be enjoyed by the public. Louis and Clara Crosina (1800’s) beside their only daughter Lil Crosina’s portrait and their one of their three son’s with his horse and dog. Also depicted are the Crosina family’s 153 mile store (1904 -1963), roadhouse and ranch.
Dwayne used the three windows in the building to separate the mural into scenes spanning time and place. Sepia tones set the mural in the deep past. The scenes are so compelling the viewer has the experience of not seeing the windows at all. The texture of the wall itself was a challenge for the muralist. It is bumpy, deep and porous stucco and it soaked up a lot of paint. Dwayne used caulking to smooth out sections were detail was needed, and some of those areas now come out further than other parts of the wall. Dwayne’s son Steven helped paint this mural.
Satya means truth, we invite you to discover yours.
Wellness is a business of friendship; of lifting people up; and of helping to provide an environment that encourages community and a better way of living. Learning to connect with our lives and the people in them, how to give ourselves permission to just be.
We are a new local business located in the Delainey’s Centre in Williams Lake, BC. Serving the Cariboo with quality photographs for all your identification needs! We also carry many beautiful and inspiring gifts from local and international artisans, including far-reaching fair-trade cooperatives in Cambodia, Ghana, and Guatemala.
There’s something special for everyone; oracle cards, locally made signs, journals, crystals, fairies, health products and more!
Artist: Young Naturalists Club with Sashi Star, 2011
Made Possible by: Delainey’s Lock & Key, Scout Island Young Naturalists Club, and the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society’s Waste Wise Program
Sick of seeing graffiti on the side of their building, Angie Delainey organized this painting event to both paint over the existing graffiti and hopefully deter future vandalism. The paint was sourced at Central Cariboo Disposal’s paint recycling program by Mary Forbes of the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society’s Waste Wise Program. In an average year, the paint recycling program diverts tens of thousands of paint cans and spray cans, which are instead returned to the depot where both the containers and the paint contents are properly recycled. Community members have the opportunity to use this paint for their home projects. For information call Central Cariboo Disposal, 5101 Frizzi Road in Williams Lake at (250) 392-5893.
Members of the community and the Young Naturalists Club (over 50 people!) came out on a beautiful spring-weather Earth Day, working under the direction of Sashi Star, who brought cohesion to the many pieces of art being created simultaneously. This was truly a community effort! Viewers will notice a red-winged blackbird which represents Scout Island (the bird is part of their logo), and several caribou which represent the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society. Since this wall was painted, there has only ever been one unsanctioned addition – a small “stick man” added to the corner. All other graffiti has ceased.
Downtown Williams Lake is a not-for-profit business improvement association which engages in a variety of revitalization and marketing activities geared specifically towards attracting residents, tourists, investors, entrepreneurs, workers, and ultimately more shoppers, diners, and service-seekers to the downtown.
To enhance our dynamic and flourishing community, with downtown at its heart.
We support our mission with the spirit of collaboration, integrity, and respect, and with a deep-seated sense of community.
As the heart of the Colourful Cariboo Culture, we will become a highly prosperous and socially desirable business, multicultural, and recreational destination.
I am an independent hairstylist that works one on one with each client so that every person who comes in gets there own personal stylist experience! I offer lash extensions and hair services: extensions, colours, and cuts. Contact me to book your appointment today!
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2008
Funded by: Communities in Bloom
This garden scene was inspired by one of Dwayne’s earliest trips to the coast where he saw Bouchard Gardens for the first time. Those early memories, combined with input from Communities in Bloom, gave rise to the sanctuary now depicted on the wall. A garden scene from the Artist’s imagination.
The mural was originally planned with a border all the way around, but it was a challenge to create the illusion of the brick receding back towards the painted gazebo. Dwayne achieved the “walk in” feel by extending the painted brick outside the border to the bottom of the wall, where the painting now touches the real parking lot cement. The painting is done in an impressionist style, with details blurred, and is meant to be gazed at from a distance. Artist Lee Sollenberger and friend Darren Thompson worked with Dwayne on this mural. Darren painted the black border surrounding the picture and learned to paint flowers. The three had a great time working on the mural together and Dwayne says that to date, this mural was the most fun to paint.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2012
Funded by: Downtown Williams Lake BIA, Cariboo Friendship Society and support of the Cariboo Regional District and City of Williams Lake through the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society
The “What a Boy Wants” sign above the bike for sale is Dwayne’s tip-of-the-hat to the biking community that was just starting to take off at the mural’s painting in 2012. General Mercantile & Tack did not really exist, but it is the kind of store that would have been the hub of each community during the 1890’s. Featured in the mural are the real historical figures Judge Begbie (1819 – 1894), standing beside the entry to the store, and Lloyd Cyclone Smith (1895 – 1932), standing in the doorway holding a saddle. The Dry Goods salesman, sitting with a cat, was painted from a photo of the property owner’s grandfather.
Dwayne chose to paint in sepia tones to give the mural a 19th century feel. The only detail not in sepia tones are the flowers in the window boxes, which Dwayne added to bring colour to the mural. Dwayne wanted to make this mural approachable and he capitalized on the empty space in front of the mural wall by creating a design that lends itself to interaction. His goal was to make the viewer feel they are part of the mural. The many people who pose in front of this mural, with vintage cars and clothing, or just for fun, are a testament to Dwayne’s success. Two amateur artists, Miranda Fontaine (staff at Friendship Society) and Jamie Moore (summer student at Downtown Williams Lake BIA) helped to paint this mural. Dwayne likes to mentor amateur mural artists. Typically, he creates the mural design and then shows the artists how to paint rough work, or specific details. On this mural, the young artists had the opportunity to paint quite a bit, and Dwayne spent as much time mentoring as he did painting himself.
3Gen is a family owned and operated business that has been in Williams Lake since 2006. With years of experience, 3Gen is a professional building and renovation company committed to quality workmanship and complete customer satisfaction.
From design to completion we strive to meet all our customers’ building needs, completing their project on time, on budget and with as little disruption to their household as possible. We are dedicated to building lasting impressions. Our focus is on delivering high-quality made-in-BC custom cabinetry and construction to the residents of the Williams Lake Area.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2004
Funded by: Communities in Bloom, City of Williams Lake, Peterson Contracting, The Paint Depot, Leon’s Painting, Windsor Plywood, and Davis Arts
Dwayne says the railway wasn’t supposed to travel through Williams Lake originally, it was planned for the much larger centre at the time 150 Mile House, then on to Quesnel. But, “in true wild-west fashion” says Dwayne, “someone paid someone and somehow, the railroad got re-routed to its current location and this City’s future was assured.” Another strong influence that helped to build Williams Lake is the Stampede Rodeo, an event that will reach its 100th year in 2026. Now a popular family attraction, the Stampede started out with dare-devil events and wild parties in the streets and many unruly cowboys locked in jail. As for the mural’s three “Williams,” William Pinchbeck (1831 – 1893) was a gold rush roadhouse operator, ranch owner, and an officer for the British Columbia Provincial Police. Chief William, namesake of the City of Williams Lake, was chief in 1842 when the first priest, Father Demers, visited the Cariboo and New Caledonia. Chief William offered Father Demers his own house to stay in and the Chief himself moved into his son’s house next door. Chief William was responsible for keeping the peace between the Aboriginal people and the early gold miners in 1859. He died in the smallpox epidemic of 1862. His son Chief William Junior took over leadership of the Williams Lake Secwepemc people and after some persistent lobbying he managed to convince the provincial government to give his people the Sugarcane reserve in 1879. While Dwayne was painting the mural, a passerby, William Lyne, told him about his own relative, William Lyne Senior who was an early settler in the Williams Lake area. Dwayne looked at the photo and promptly added the 3rd William to the mural. This mural was painted for Williams Lake’s 75th birthday and depicts the town’s early influences: The Pacific Great Eastern Railway, cowboy & ranching culture, and the City’s three “Williams”: William Pinchbeck (left), Chief William (centre), and William Lyne Sr. (right). The cowboys here are Pierro Squinahan and Patrick Chelsea shown performing an early stampede rodeo event called Roman Racing where cowboys would ride two horses with one foot on each horse.
At a mural price of $4000, and the largest mural Dwayne had ever been commissioned for, his challenge was to keep costs down. During the long painting process, it rained often and at one point the scaffolding got stuck and almost tipped over. Our prolific Dwayne Davis almost became part of Williams Lake history right then and there! Of all Dwayne’s murals in Williams Lake, this one covers the largest square footage. Lion Carrigon donated time to prepare the wall for the mural and Peterson Contracting donated power scaffolding so Dwayne could access the complete wall to paint it.
I have recently returned the Cariboo and I look forward to building my practice. During my schooling, I provided treatments for a variety of conditions, from neurological origins, pre/post-orthopedic surgery, to working with pediatrics, the elderly and athletes. I enjoy helping my clients through assessment and modifying treatment plans to their individual needs using neuromuscular therapy, trigger point release, myofascial release, Swedish massage, joint mobilizations and muscle energy techniques. I always offer suggestions for remedial exercises and hydrotherapy as home care. In the future, I plan to further my knowledge in visceral manipulation and myofascial release techniques.
I am the only licensed Naturopathic Doctor in the south/central Cariboo, with office locations in both Williams Lake and 100 Mile House. As a Naturopathic Doctor, I try to assess the underlying reason(s) for a person’s health concerns, and then find ways to help their body function better so that those health concerns don’t happen in the first place – treating the cause, if you will.
If you have any questions or concerns or would like to speak with me prior to booking an appointment, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email!
We provide recreation and culture programming to at-risk youth as a means to crime prevention, as well as providing social and restorative justice services to vulnerable populations.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2004
Funded by: Hobbit House
Leanne Kunka, owner of Hobbit House, asked Dwayne to paint a tree into the wall. Dwayne let the wall guide the mural. He soon found himself adding hidden faces and characters. People walking by suggested ideas and Dwayne let all the creative input flow into the mural. A tree grows into the wall, providing shelter for otherworldly creatures. The mural is a perfect metaphor for the way Hobbit House’s café, store and gathering spaces provide shelter for a vibrant community of twinkling souls.
The mural wall is in a tight space, with lots of window. The texture of the wall is clapboard. Dwayne worked with these constraints in an organic way, playing with what space was there and allowing the surface to dictate the feel of an illusive secret garden shimmering just beyond a man-made structure. Dwayne painted this one on his own.
We strive to maintain an accepting, inclusive space where people can enjoy their hobbies freely and safely, allowing burgeoning communities a place to do their thing and be themselves.
I am a Certified Nathorpathic Massage Specialist, a Certified Lash & Brow Technician, Certified Wax Technician. I offer massage service and reflexology service, body waxing services, Lash and Brow Extensions, and Lash and Brow tinting. I also carry a variety of wellness-related retail including essential oils, diffusers, salt lamps, and water fountains.
RE/MAX Williams Lake Realty is a locally owned real estate brokerage. RE/MAX stands out because of its mix of globally recognizable branding, and local real estate agents that have extensive knowledge of the region. Working with a RE/MAX agent allows you take advantage of our outstanding service, continuous agent education, and targeted advertising. Feel good about your whole experience knowing each RE/MAX agent celebrates the culture of giving by supporting various charities through each home purchase and sale in our office.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2012
Funded by: Friendship Society, Downtown Williams Lake BIA, City of Williams Lake
Dwayne conducted in-depth research at the local museum, online, and with people at the Friendship Society to make this mural as true to history as possible. Research was difficult as very little of the Secwepemc culture has been recorded. The garments worn by the figures picking berries are considered to be accurate by locals as well as the cedar or birch bark baskets they are holding. Other traditional regalia would have been buck skin and feathers or fur. Dwayne had input from many Elders who confirmed and collaborated on getting the details right, especially with the sweat lodge. Modern sweat lodge structures are much the same today, however, instead of hides tarps and blankets are now used. Dwayne remembers seeing the Tsilhqot’in people himself in the 70’s, scraping hides with a flattened hoe on wooden scaffolding as depicted in this mural. The salmon drying in the mural is laid out in Secwepemc style as opposed to Lillooet style. The end result is like a thin jerky. A local dip net builder made sure Dwayne got the dip net tool painted correctly. Depiction of Secwepemc culture’s day-to-day living before colonization. The scene is set behind the Fraser River by Soda Creek where the current Xatsull Heritage Village site is located. Man in foreground is holding a dip net, a tool for fishing that is still used today by the Secwepemc and Tsilhqot’in First Nations in the Fraser. In the background are drying racks for fish and a sweat lodge made of hides. A woman is scraping a hide as it is stretched out on wooden scaffolding.
The painted mural area leads down into a lower entry space, beckoning the viewer to the bottom stair where they become surrounded by the mural. This was a unique opportunity, to paint outside and still have a surround-styled mural. Dwayne focused on making the corners of the space disappear, while merging the separate scenes into a panoramic whole. Two amateur artists, Miranda Fontaine (staff at Friendship Society) and Jamie Moore (summer student at Downtown Williams Lake BIA) helped to paint this mural.
Artist: Dwayne Davis, 2012
Funded by: Cariboo Friendship Society
The Cariboo Friendship Society wanted to honour these four women and Dwayne was given their photographs. Liz Robertson was a founding member of the Friendship Society and was instrumental in bringing the Native Indian Teachers Education Program to Williams Lake in the 70’s. Chiwid, name-sake of the society’s transition house, was abused by her husband and chose to leave him and lived in harmony with the land, without a house in the woods. Marg Ahdemar was the Executive Director for the Friendship Society. Augusta, subject of a National Film Board movie and a book, served her community as a self-taught midwife. The mural features portraits of four women that were leaders in the First Nation women’s rights movement. In order of appearance from left to right: Liz Robertson, Chiwid (Lily Skinner Jack), Marg Ahdemar, and Augusta Tapage Evans.
For mural work, these portraits are quite detailed. The portraits sit slightly above eye-level, and were placed that way so the viewer experiences looking up to the courageous women. Four First Nations youth artists from the Cariboo Friendship Society helped block in areas of this mural.
Artist: Dwane Davis, 2012
Funded by: Cariboo Friendship Society
Dancing and drumming around the fire is not part of the Secwepemc tradition however, thanks to Hollywood, it is a depiction we are all familiar with. Animals and spirits rise out of the fire welcomed by drummers and dancers.
Dwayne mentored four First Nation youth artists from the Friendship Society as they painted this mural.