Debbie is an artist and art therapist living in Lekwungen Territory (Esquimalt, BC) on Vancouver Island and has always been a creative being. As a child she was often found barefoot, playing in mud puddles and trying her hand at making sculptures that she would leave drying in the summer sun. When faced with the need to clean off those muddy hands she discovered the joy of painting on a large canvas, or rather, the side of her family home, much to the dismay of her parents. Despite those early discouragements, Debbie persevered and continued her art practice throughout her life and brought creative expression to everything she did. From a career in marketing, to creating video art and short films, Debbie surrounded herself with creative material and creative people all while developing her own art practice. Formally, Debbie studied art in Spain where she lived for 7 years. She graduated from the Valladolid Fine Arts school in Spain, in 2009 where she studied art history and sculpture and honed her sketching and painting skills in private studios in Valladolid and at the Arts Student League of New York. She became an art therapist in 2017, receiving her professional designation from the Vancouver Art Therapy Institute.
The Art of Reconciliation
Professionally I have dedicated myself to working with young adults and communities interested in advancing reconciliation and decolonization efforts through art. I have partnered with the Victoria Native Friendship Centre (VNFC) and the University of Victoria's Center for Youth and Society to create and deliver programming here on Vancouver Island and throughout BC through the Art of Reconciliation. If you are interested in creating your own arts based reconciliation program, please contact me for more information or read more here.