Coast Salish/Kwakwaka'wakw

Squamish, BC

Xwalacktun, also known as Rick Harry, was given his name by his father, a Hereditary Chief from the Seymour Creek area. From 1978 to 1982, Xwalacktun attended Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, BC, and graduated with a degree in Sculpture. In 2001, he was invited to be one of a select number of artists to participate in Scotland's Totem Pole Project, where he travelled to Dunkeld to carve a pole for the community there. Xwalacktun went back to other towns in Scotland in 2005 and 2008 to complete similar projects with artists such as Squamish carver Aaron Nelson-Moody and Coast Salish/Tlingit artist Ray Natrall. In 2009, Xwalacktun was asked to be a contributing artist for Simon Fraser University's A Journey Into Time Immemorial, an interactive website based on traditional Salish culture. His skills are diverse: he has appeared and acted on the television show Sesame Street, he created many of the official graphics for the 2010 Winter Olympics, and he works in everything from wood to stone.