Released March 2018
I belong to the K’ómoks First Nation and we are deep into the British Columbia treaty process. I truly have mixed feelings about our involvement in this. By choosing to engage in the process, we enter a world of consultants and negotiators and other strange, scary and wonderful creatures. We partake in a world of borrowing and debt; of meetings and fights. We enter without knowing whether we are journeying into the dark side or are on a path towards the light.
What I do know is that under the treaty process, our community has begun to fracture. Our very future as a people is at stake. Will treaty define who we are or will our culture do that? Will treaty lead us to form a “Treaty Empire” or a “Treaty Rebellion”?
The backbone of our community has always been our elders--the keepers of our traditions...the knowledgeable ones. We look up to them with their deep-set wrinkles and greyed hair. We look into their eyes and see experience and wisdom. We listen to ancient stories falling from their lips and we hear recollections of the way things were and the way things ought to be.
Yet, we often overlook this wisdom. We think we know it all. We live in modern times and the elders’ outdated ways are for the past. We get our elders out to meetings and pay them in order to validate anything we want to push through our treaties. Give up traditional governance? Sure! Relegate traditional ways to insignificance? Of course! However, true elders can’t and won’t be bought. They will speak up for the old ways because the old ways are all that differentiate us from the rest of the world. I trust that our elders will use their wisdom to keep us on the right path and put strength back into our community.
“Elder” is a limited edition print using the giclée method of printmaking. This print was released in March of 2018 and printed by Andy Everson at the artist’s own studio in Comox B.C. A total of 241 prints bear the title “Elder” and are signed by Andy Everson: 200 in the primary edition bearing the numbers 1/200 through 200/200; 20 Artist’s Proofs; 20 Remarques and 1 Printer’s Proof. The acid-free 100% cotton rag paper measures about 8.5x11 inches. Image size measures about 7.7x9.7 inches.