The documentary film gives an intimate look into the life of one of Canada’s greatest artists
Athene Film Inc. is pleased to announce the documentary Executive producers Natalie Boll, Randall Perry, and LaTiesha Ti’si’tla Fazakas have spent over five years completing this highly anticipated documentary. In the roles of directors, producers, and writers, Natalie and LaTiesha put their hearts and souls into telling a story that needed to be told.
Meet Beau Dick – Maker of Monsters is a portrait of Canadian art legend, Beau Dick, an enigmatic carver from a small remote village on the Northwest Coast of British Columbia. His remarkable masks have been celebrated across the global art scene as vibrant expressions of West Coast Indigenous culture and a sophisticated crossover into the contemporary art world. Dick had an unprecedented ability to tap into the collective memory of his people and breathe new life into age-old traditions.
The film strives to capture the essence of Beau Dick and his mysterious enigma as an artist who symbolized Canada’s history with the First Nations and the ethical dilemmas faced in reconciling with that colonialist history. Dick was able to use his celebrity to call attention to the injustices done to his people and the environment.
Weaving together the personal and cultural until both become inseparable, Meet Beau Dick – Maker of Monsters presents an artist who succeeded in reconciling the two. Sadly, Beau passed away in March 2017, but he was able to see a rough cut of the film before his passing at 61 years old. This film has become a beautiful legacy of who Beau Dick was.
Meet Beau Dick – Maker of Monsters illuminates a man whose art and life continue to transcend expectations and boundaries. Natalie Boll explains, “We wanted to tell a story of both the artist and the world that informed his work. We aimed to present Beau in an intuitive and authentic tone, and to define his position within Canada’s complex colonial history and the larger struggle for Indigenous rights.”
”There are always good local artists and craftsmen, but only a few in each generation who are recognized on the international stage. Beau’s masks are wonderful to look at, but more than that, one can see the colour interactions, design, and balance in the indefinable blend that truly makes them special. Beau was also a work of art himself, as wonderful a person as he was quirky,” adds Randall Perry, past gallery owner and member of London’s Chelsea Art Club.
The project started with LaTiesha Fazakas in 2010 as Beau’s representative, close friend, and adopted family member. After two years of development, she met Natalie Boll, and together they worked for the next five years on the project as co-directors/partners. “I wanted the storytelling to be reflective of Beau’s cultural background, and yet accessible to a non-Native audience, says LaTiesha. “And so we proceeded, throughout the journey, in an organic fashion that put us in the place of listener rather than speaker. And we listened very closely to everything that Beau said.”
Natalie Boll’s career included over 15 years of production experience as a Producer, Writer, and Production Manager. The first time Natalie held a Beau Dick mask, she felt it had power, it had spirit, and it was alive. Natalie committed herself to the documentary after she flew to Alert Bay to meet Beau and found he was just as magical as his mask. Natalie has worked as a producer in both scripted and non-scripted television specializing in online content strategies. Natalie has also managed a variety of productions including Food Networks’ World’s Weirdest Restaurants, HGTV Canada’s Urban Suburban and the feature film Rampage 3 now on Netflix.
Director of the Fazakas Gallery in Vancouver BC, LaTiesha Fazakas’ experience managing galleries, curating, and art consulting gives her a unique insight into the art world. A leading expert in Northwest Coast Native art, LaTiesha represents some of the genre’s most talented individuals. LaTiesha’s close personal and professional relationship with Beau spanned over two decades and forged the dynamics of this project.
Meet Beau Dick – Maker of Monsters (part of VIFF’s #mustseeBC) will screen on Saturday, September 30, 9:15pm, andWednesday, October 11, 3:45pm at SFU, Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, 149 W Hastings St, Vancouver. Producers will be in attendance and available for interviews. For tickets, visit: www.viff.org.
Natalie and LaTiesha are available for interviews upon request.