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Jasper-based art exhibit recognized

Tuktu Prayers, local artist and framer Marianne Garrah’s brainchild that has been migrating across Canada since last fall, is at once a seminal display of diverse artistic mediums and a call-to-action for Canadians regarding the plight of the caribou. The 50-piece-strong exhibit will make its way to Jasper for the park’s Centennial anniversary, September 14. Garrah, whose blend of creativity and activism has earned her a fair degree of notoriety in the art, environmental and political arenas of Alberta, has said the innovative works come from the idea that the the Woodland Caribou herds in Jasper have declined in the last 100 years. 

“The hope is that this traveling exhibition will not only celebrate the centenary of the park but also educate Canadians about National Parks and the need to keep these places wild,” she said.

Nominating Tuktu – which means caribou, in Inuit – was Jasper’s Jill Seaton, representing the Jasper Environmental Association. Seaton said it was dually JEA’s concern for the caribou’s existence and the incredible effort Garrah demonstrated in getting the exhibition off the ground that inspired the nod. “It’s one thing to have biologists concerned [about the caribou],” Seaton said. “But Marianne’s idea of bringing it to art was so innovative, so imaginative. We thought it was bound to attract attention.”

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