The Art of Reconciliation welcomes Indigenous and non-Indigenous young adult participants between the ages of 18 – 29 years old, residing on the lək̓ʷəŋən and WSANEC Territories (CRD and Greater Victoria).

Summer 2021 Cohort

Nicole Achtymichuk

Nicole Achtymichuk (she/her) is an emerging curator of Ukrainian and Dutch descent. She was born on Treaty 7 territory and has resided on stolen lək̓ʷəŋən and W̱SÁNEĆ lands since 2016. Nicole holds a B.Sc. in Anthropology from the University of Victoria, and is committed to decolonizing institutions by rethinking how space and resources are used.

Dahlila Charlie

I am a Coast Salish artist from Victoria, BC. I grew up surrounded by artistic and creative people which has inspired me to become an artist myself. I draw from stories, myths and cultural teachings.

I incorporate Coast Salish formline with nature and realism in acrylic paint, my preferred medium. Painting has always been a passion of mine.

I learned how to paint in high school and then worked on murals in Victoria. I continue learning from mentors and teaching myself techniques. Through my artwork I connect to my roots as an Indigenous woman.

I use art to share my thoughts, ideas, and to evolve as an artist.

April Gallicano

Hi there! My name is April Gallicano and I have lived on the unceded territory of the W̱SÁNEĆ and lək̓ʷəŋən Nations my entire life. My ancestry is mixed European and South Asian, which is sometimes where I get my inspiration from, but most of my work is inspired by the natural world around us. Over the past year I have been reconnecting with my passion for creating things with my hands, and I have been getting drawn to fiber arts and painting. What was once a hobby of mine is now a large part of my life, and I am so grateful for this opportunity to share my work with you.

Bekah Hagan Ahenda

Bekah (she/her) is a writer, artist, and local pastor who loves meaningful conversations, not taking herself too seriously, and the Fast and the Furious movies.

She and her husband Mark gratefully make their home at the base of PKOLS, the sacred space which lies between W̱SÁNEĆ and lək̓ʷəŋən traditional territory. She is of English, Italian, and Russian Mennonite descent. Ahenda is her husband’s last name and he is of Luo (Kenyan) and German Mennonite descent.

Bekah is a recovering overachiever with high functioning anxiety which is not a great combo but she’s figuring out how to slow down and leave behind the teachings and beliefs that hold her (and us) back through art and community.

Her core values are healing, hope, vulnerability, and friendship.

Sophie Ladd

Sophie Ladd is an Art History Master’s student at the University of Victoria. She will be graduating in April 2022 and her main interest and hope is to work with in Community and Youth programming. That is how she found herself involved with ECAH starting in February 2021. Sophie has always had an interest in Indigenous issues and arts, growing stronger these past few years. When the opportunity came to join the Art of Reconciliation program, she felt it was an pivotal chance to learn with and from peers (Indigenous and non-Indigenous).

Emma Sainte-Marie

Emma was born and raised in Victoria British-Columbia (traditional lək̓ʷəŋən territory). She is a nineteen-year-old performer, writer, and artist. In June 2021, she graduated with a Diploma of Performing Arts from the Canadian College of Performing Arts, and will continue pursuing her passion for music with Berklee College of Music Online in the Fall. Emma loves many artistic disciplines, usually focusing on performing and writing, but also visual arts. She enjoys painting with acrylic paint and creating mixed media pieces. Emma also enjoys fashion, design, and makeup artistry. She finds nature very inspiring, including flowers, rain, ocean, and stars. In Emma’s art, there are often people or faces, nature and symbolism, bright colours, and a variety of textures.

The Art of Reconciliation is a 2-month program that takes place on the traditional territory of the lək̓ʷəŋən People (Songhees and Esquimalt Nations) and the WSÁNEĆ First Nations.