George Elliott                                This rock on Old Hedley Road is the canvass for a sacred First Nations pictograph.

George Elliott This rock on Old Hedley Road is the canvass for a sacred First Nations pictograph.

Spray paint artist desecrates sacred pictograph

The president of Princeton’s Museum was upset to learn recently of a spray painting covering a sacred First Nations pictograph.

The pictograph, on a stone on Old Hedley Road, was spray painted some time during the spring, said George Elliott. “I’ve always been very respectful of what these are and what they mean,” said Elliott, adding it’s difficult for any non-indigenous person to truly appreciate their cultural and spiritual value.

Pictographs are First Nations paintings made usually with red ochre, and BC is famous for its natural collection of rock art.

Elliott declined to pinpoint the exact location of the pictograph and the graffiti.

And he suggested the person who painted the large red heart and words on the rock probably didn’t know what he or she was doing.

“Very likely whoever did this had no idea that the other stuff has significance.”

A spokesperson for the Upper Similkameen Indian Band said because of the sensitivity surrounding these works of historic art, she could not comment immediately, but would seek a response from the band members.