The Chilliwack Mural Festival, Canada 2023

Chilliwack Mural Festival is a historic downtown public art festival that combines the live creation of large-scale murals with some of Canada’s and the World’s emerging and established artists. Founded in 2019 by local business owner/community activist Amber Price, the Chilliwack Mural Festival has partnered with Chilliwack Arts Council for a big, bolder Mural festival.

Chilliwack Mural Festival’s mission is to showcase the best and bring the world to Chilliwack. They prioritise diversity in their artists, strive to reflect the local community, and remove barriers to accessing art.

The festival is hosted on the unceded territory of the Stó꞉lō people, spanning from the community of Yale in the Fraser Canyon to the mouth of the Fraser River. In Halq’eméylem, the language of the region, “Stó:lō” translates as “river”. The Stó:lō First Nations people, or “people of the river”, have always lived in the region, and their ancient stories, history, culture, teachings and knowledge of the area are passed down through the indigenous generations. 

Murals can be spotted all over Chilliwack, and below are some of the wonderful creations you can find either by taking a stroll or on one of their tours. Chilliwack has become an art city with more than 40 murals since 2019.

This year, its fourth year, there was a three-day celebration of the arts from August 10th until the 12th, 2023. Kicking off the festival was a conversion with leading Stó:lō voices in the creative community called ‘Stories About Place’. Conversations were focused on art, community, and place from a Stó:lō perspective.

Along with all the mural painting was live music, cultural events, dance battles, food trucks, art zones, and fun festival events.

This year’s artists were Curtis Hylton, SATR, Ronnie Harris/Malō:yhleq (Ostwelve), Jared Deck, HENGone (Heng) and Carolyn Wong. Check out the murals below …

Curtis Hylton Peek a boo and Floral Belted Kingfisher

Curtis Hylton paints in his signature style two huge murals for this year’s festival.

SATR Let the Lion Fall, Love Will Catch It.

“This latest creation is a tale of love that I’ve penned down. A lion tumbles into a sea of flowers, vines entwining it while delicate blossoms radiate a gentle halo. People often speak of falling in love – that rush of adrenaline that makes us feel weightless in descent, a mix of euphoria and the thrill of the unknown. This marks my first time in Canada, and I’ve felt that love here is diverse. Each individual is free to embrace love’s embrace, much like the expansive love represented in my artwork – vines that stretch limitlessly, knowing no boundaries. These vines wrap around us, igniting a myriad of thoughts, offering unwavering support for us to love freely. Of course, I believe that each person will interpret this artwork in their own unique way. I’m eager to hear diverse opinions, just as love itself defies definition.”

satrxx Instagram

Ronnie Harris/Malō:yhleq Sílhqey telí Sts’elexw

“Sílhqey telí Sts’elexw This is definitely not Ogopogo. This image of “Sílhqey” is an interpretation of the human connection to stories of a double-headed snake or serpent that lives in the waters around this area as told through oral histories left to us by elders such as Bob Joe and Dan Milo. This Sílhqey mural is an acknowledgement of stories encoded into the lands + waters through an intricate network infrastructure of human histories intersecting with creation stories. While some would label a story as this within the realm of cryptozoology, from another viewpoint,it also represents a snapshot of biodiversity as well as a call to action on how to show up in time and place through the values + principles encoded within the symbols of these stories. This mural is just one interpretation of some of those tellings. Also, it’s just a rad story connected to this place.”

Ronnie Harris/Malō:yhleq
Instagram ostwelveproductions

Jared Deck /Stl’áleqem /Supernatural

“Although forest fires are a natural occurrence and benefit the landscape, the current state of burning is beyond anything that we have ever seen. Is it climate change, the apocalypse, or natural process? Shxwexwós (thunderbird) has started a héyeqw (fire) with its lightning. Sasq’ets (sasquatch) emerges from his shelter in Xpá:yelhp (cedar tree), and Chitmexw(great horned owl) helps to hide his face. Tl’elqtele’s (deer) antlers shift into the roots, as replenishment for the ground.”

Jared Deck / Stl’áleqem / Supernatural instagram

Carolyn Wong Summer Paradise

“A happy place featuring the water rabbit and a delightful water lily/lotus pond.”

Carolyn Wong Summer Paradise Instagram


Check their website, as August 2024 dates are coming soon!

Photo credit Claudia Wyler



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