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Reconciliation movement launches first artist collaboration

Master weaver Shy Watters

Master weaver Shy Watters will be at the Sechelt library Wednesday, Aug. 8 as part of the launch of “Weaving Reconciliation: the Fabric of Our Lives,” an artistic collaboration that forms part of syiyaya Reconciliation Movement.

Watters’ design, entitled “Paddling Together,” is for a cedar and wool blanket and is the first artist collaboration of the movement.

The Wednesday event will be an opening talk with members of the syiyaya Reconciliation Movement and Watters from 7 to 8 p.m. Watters will then begin weaving at the library from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 11, and Saturday, Aug. 18, among other public venues this summer and fall. The public is welcome.

Weavers Raquel Joe and Jessica Silvey will join the project in the coming months, the group said in a release.

Watters’ blanket design includes water motifs, a cedar canoe and sunrays that look like paddles, representing the work of reconciliation. Another feature is the “Salish Eye” design, which is common to Coast Salish and shíshálh weavings. Cedar for the blanket will be harvested from shíshálh territory.

More blankets are planned, and they will be hung in prominent places in the community.

This one-year project is designed to raise awareness and cultivate dialogue about reconciliation in and provide an opportunity for members of the public to participate in the weaving of friendship blankets.