Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Kwekwínmut: Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Smánitmut, tiná7 ta Ch’kw’elhp iy Schen’k / Pieces of the Past: Squamish Stone Artifacts from Ch’kw’elhp and Schen’k, is a collaborative exhibit that features ancient Squamish pieces from the Museum’s collection of stone tools. The collection represents the Early, Middle and Late periods of Northwest Coast archaeological sequence and come from a range of site types, from permanent Squamish villages to seasonal camps. These primordial objects exemplify the material expression of Squamish culture and provide insight into Squamish ways of knowing.
In 2010, Kimiko Hawkes, Sunshine Coast Museum Manager and Curator, sought input and direction from the Squamish Nation on the museum’s permanent exhibit of Squamish artifacts. Ms. Hawkes’ invitation began a collaborative process which started with a visit to the Museum and a viewing of the collection by Squamish Nation Councilors’ Julie Baker and Deborah Baker, Squamish Nation Education Department staff, and a Squamish archaeology undergraduate student.
The Elders Advisory Committee and Vanessa Campbell, Squamish language team leader, identified the objects by Squamish name and provided some description. This work continued into research, analysis and cataloguing of the collection by Dr. Rudy Reimer (Squamish), and members of the Archaeological Society of British Columbia.
Co-curator Damara Jacobs-Morris (Squamish), believes this exhibit allows visitors a chance to explore both the function and cultural significance of the stone pieces. Kwekwínmut / Pieces of the Past is presented in the Skwxwù7mesh snichim (Squamish language) and English. Visitors have the opportunity to hear Squamish being spoken in the exhibit’s soundscape piece that includes oral history interviews and the telling of the Squamish Origin legend.
Deborah Jacobs, Squamish Nation Education Department Head and member of the Exhibit Advisory Committee comments, “The land evokes a connection to Squamish place and provides our spirit with a rich landscape. You may come to value and understand the narrative that Ch’kw’elhp and Schen’k provide our humanity in a complex world.”
The Sunshine Coast Museum & Archives and the Squamish Nation invite the public to the Opening Celebration on Tuesday, October 4, 2011 from 1pm to 4pm. Chief Ian Campbell and Chief Gibby Jacob will start the celebration with a traditional blessing. Local dignitaries will give welcome addresses. The co-curators and Advisory Committee will be on hand. Admission is by donation and refreshments will be served. For more information, contact the Museum.