Chief Kúkpwi7 Gélpcal
Cultural Chief of the Lil'wat Nation
Kúkwpi7 Gélpcal (Cultural Chief R.A. Joseph) was born in Sk̲wx̲wú7mesh (Squamish), British Columbia and is a citizen of the Lil’wat Nation (Mount Currie). His roots are gathered from Tsal'alh (Seton Lake), home of his mother Xí7tsa7, and Lil'wat, home of his father Saw'.
Gélpcal is a multi-medium artist, specializing in carving wood and soapstone, acrylic painting, pine needle basketry, and pyrography. He loves being self-sufficient in the outdoors and spending his time fishing and harvesting medicine, tea, berries, pine mushrooms, and other food from the land.
Volunteer work is very important to Gélpcal, as he is quick to admit that he did not build himself, rather, the community did. He knows all time is precious, so he spends it collecting stories and sharing them through all he creates. Teaching only furthers his passion as he finds security in knowing that he’s provided guidance to new artists and assured that his rich culture is to be shared always.