A gas station may seem like an unlikely place for an art installation, but its unveiling revealed why the Indigenous-led piece is perfectly placed.
The Beercroft Fuel station in Westbank uncovered the highly-anticipated mural designed by local Indigenous artist CoraLee Miller and crafted by students from the Sənsisyustən House of Learning. The fuel company comissioned the collaborative art piece to show their appreciation for being able to operate on Indigenous land.
“It’s about the joy of being able to operate on this land,” said Sue Gaudet, public relations manager of Beercroft Fuel.
The mural showcases Indigenous connection to the land and stories of the landscape.
Miller, the artist who led the children in their mural painting, said she “wanted it to incorporate all the things that the kids were learning about” when designing the mural.
The art piece includes images of the Water Chief, Turtle Island, pictographs, Okanagan Lake, mountains, the trickster spirit, bitterroot and Indigenous people foraging and fishing.
“The stuff that we did isn’t all in the past, we are still doing it.”
She admits that she did have to go in and do some touch-ups after the students were done, but said that the piece really was made by the children.
Students from Sənsisyustən were at the unveiling and eagerly told Capital News about the parts they painted and the things they learned.
One girl learned to give the illusion of dimension on Saskatoon berries with paint, while another had to work on his speed painting to get all the water parts completed.