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Dehcho Region

The Dehcho in the Southwest Region encompasses the majestic Nahanni National Park Reserve, which has been inspiring artists and explorers alike for hundreds of years. Spectacular waterfalls, the mighty Mackenzie River and thick boreal forest surround the region’s communities and are home to a wide variety of wildlife, birds and luscious plant life. The South Slavey speaking Dene are passionate about preserving their culture and traditional ways of life.

Birch trees surround the Fort Liard area of the territory and traditional artists have perfected the technique of gathering and preparing the raw birchbark to make exquisite birchbark baskets. These baskets are intricately decorated with beadworkmoosehair tufting or quillwork in the designs of fruit, flowers and birds. Locally tanned moose or caribou hide are also used to create clothing and footwear, embellished with similar techniques to add colour and unique artistic expression.

There is a multicultural influence that encourages contemporary techniques to blend with traditional arts, musicians to sing from the heart and authors to tell stories of living in this picturesque part of the country. The annual Open Sky Festival held every summer in Fort Simpson demonstrates these diverse talents.

To learn more about where to Buy local art in the Dehcho region click here.

Dehcho Regional Updates

The Department of Industry, Tourism & Investment’s (ITI's) Strategic Initiatives have provided funding to emerging and established Dehcho artisans throughout the Dehcho. ITI has also been assisting the NWT Registered artists by making traditionally tanned moose hide and fur pelts available for purchase. There have been, and continue to be, opportunities for artists to participate in exhibits, events, workshops and network throughout the year.

AVAILABLE FOR SALE at the Fort Simpson regional Industry, Tourism office... Natural (5) and sheared black (3), sheared brown (18) beaver pelts, also fox (7) and muskrat (13)pelts Traditionally tanned moose hides from the Fort Liard area.  

Sending a huge thank you to all our artists who took part in all the events that were held this summer in the DEH CHO, at the workshops, festivals and fairs.  Mahsi :)