Chilliwack’s latest work of public art is now in place downtown at Five Corners.
The artwork ‘Meetcha at the 5’ was designed by the Chilliwack-based artist team of David Kilvert and Krista Kilvert, and produced by TDH Experiential Fabricators.
The metal and polycarbonate structure is lit from within by LED, and the colour of the lighting can be changed for special occasions.
The imagery honours the Stó:lō history of the area, the importance of Five Corners in the region, and Chilliwack’s journey transforming into a growing and vibrant Fraser Valley community.
“The Public Art Advisory Committee was looking for a piece that would provide a strong visual and suit the area’s new look,” said Coun. Harv Westeringh, vice chair of the public art advisory committee. “It was a pleasure to see local artists David and Krista Kilvert’s work on this piece to uniquely fit our community.”
Council approved the conceptual design in 2021 following an elaborate request-for-proposals (RFP) process. The RFP for the $60,000 project winnowed the choice down from 10 design submissions, to four that were viable, and ultimately one that was chosen.
The artists made a point of consulting local Stó:lō leadership on the design of the pictograms and territory acknowledgement. They included historical and interpretive details about Chilliwack, Indigenous land acknowledgement and a welcome in Halq’emeylem.
The metal base reads: “Chilliwack is located on the traditional, cultural and unceded territory of the Ts’elxwéyeqw and Pelólhxw tribes of the Stó:lō Coast Salish peoples.”
There’s a sculptured bird in the cutout of the piece, and red berries attached to reflect the beauty of nature in the region and its agricultural strengths. Inside the illuminated part of the structure are pictograms with recognizable local imagery like a raspberry, great blue heron, barn, cedar tree, salmon, greenhouse, cyclist, drum and more.
The design for the three-metre high piece was recommended for approval by the majority of the public art advisory committee but then it went back to the committee for reconsideration when some members of council had some questions. The art committee put the top three proponents through a rigorous qualification process, and again chose the Meetcha at the 5 as the best design for the Five Corners location in June 2021.
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