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Warm Welcome

The Annual Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art Student Art Exhibition commenced on Friday, March 1st, at 6 pm with an opening event. Both instructors and student artists graced the occasion, allowing Kitimat residents to engage with various artists and inquire about their works. The evening proved to be a delightful gathering, fostering discussions and appreciation for the diverse talents and creativity showcased.

This year’s exhibition features art pieces by first- and second-year students, including the winners of the President’s Choice Award (Savannah Medeiros) and Honourable Mention (Erica Davis).

This unique institution, part of Coast Mountain College, offers Fine Arts Certificates and Diplomas with a focus on traditional First Nations Pacific Northwest Coast art. Subjects taught include carving, painting, drawing, art history, and tool making. It is the only school of its kind in all of Canada.

The School is named after Haida artist Freda Diesing (Skil Kew Wat). Diesing was a master carver, painter, educator, and champion of First Nations culture. She and several other Indigenous artists helped bring about a reawakening of Northwest Coast arts in the 1960s. Her students included well-known artists such as Dempsey Bob, Norman Tait, and her nephew Don Yeomans. Diesing received an honorary diploma from Coast Mountain College in 2000 and the National Aboriginal Achievement Award in 2002. The Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art was founded in her honour by Dempsey Bob, Ken McNeil, and Stan Bevan in 2006.

View past works by Freda Diesing, and students and faculty of the School here.

A group of indigenous artists gathered for an art gallery show opening.

2024 Freda Diesing Opening Reception at the Kitimat Museum & Archives