Métis artist selected as final participant in Coca-Cola's aboriginal art
bottle program

Program designed to offer the Aboriginal community an opportunity to show the world its culture. All funds raised in the online auction will benefit Vancouver 2010 Aboriginal Youth Legacy Fund.

VANCOUVER, Feb. 15 /CNW/ - Today, Coca-Cola selected Lisa Shepherd as the final artist in its Aboriginal art bottle program. In total, 15 artists were selected from more than 100 Aboriginal artists across Canada to participate in the program, which was designed to leverage the Olympic opportunity and help the Aboriginal community share its culture with the world. The program will also help the Aboriginal community financially. From February 15 - 25, 2010, each Coca-Cola Art Bottle will be available to collectors from around the world for purchase at the Aboriginal Art Bottle Auction. All proceeds will go to the Vancouver 2010 Aboriginal Youth Legacy Fund, which supports First Nations, Inuit, and Métis youth across Canada.

"Our cultures are thriving and we want to share them with the world," said Tewanee Joseph, Chief Executive Officer of the Four Host First Nations, Official Partners of the 2010 Winter Games. "When visitors come to the Games, they will experience First Nations, Inuit and Métis cultures in an unprecedented way, from works of art in prominent locations at venues to youth acting as torchbearers and flame attendants during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay. The Coca-Cola Aboriginal Art Bottle program is another exciting example of how the diversity of Aboriginal peoples will be showcased during the Games."

The Aboriginal art bottles have been unveiled regionally, across the country, throughout the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay. The artists, both amateurs and professionals, are First Nations, Inuit or Métis. An independent adjudication panel conducted the review. The Art Bottles will be on display in Vancouver at various locations during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Interested bidders may view the art bottles by visiting www.iCoke.ca or through eBay at http://pages.ebay.ca/charity/. A totem pole created during the Games by renowned artist Clarence Mills will also be sold.

"Coca-Cola's innovative Aboriginal Art Bottle Program is another important avenue for First Nations, Inuit and Métis to feel a personal connection with Canada's Games in 2010," said John Furlong, Chief Executive Officer of the Vancouver Organizing Committee of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC). "It's wonderful to see such a range of talented artists across the country unleashing their creativity to show the world a brand new way to look at the iconic Coke bottle and the limitless potential of Aboriginal art."

Lisa Shepherd's bottle is titled "the awakening" and represents the art, culture and lifestyle of the Métis people while remembering and honouring the ancestors. The design of the bottle itself brings together elements that are distinct to the Métis people: beaver fur, the Hudson Bay blanket, the combination of leatherwork with floral beading on wool that was so unique to the Métis, the sash that historically had so many practical uses and photo images of the ancestors.

"The 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games provide an unprecedented opportunity for Aboriginal artists from across the country to share their talents with the world," said Mary McNeil, Minister of State for the Olympics and ActNow BC, Province of British Columbia. "Coca-Cola's Aboriginal Art Bottle Program and Auction has provided a unique opportunity to ensure that First Nations share in the benefits of hosting the Games."

"In keeping with our global and national goal of leveraging the Olympic Games to create a more positive reality for Canada, we wanted to create a program designed to profile the unique and talented Aboriginal community," said Nicola Kettlitz, General Manager, Coca-Cola's Olympic Project Team. "In addition to showcasing Aboriginal art to the world, the Aboriginal Art Bottle Program will create a legacy of initiatives to support Aboriginal youth across Canada through the online auction of these works of art."

Artist Biography

Lisa Shepherd

Lisa grew up in the Prairies, in Spruce Grove, Alberta. She graduated from Spruce Grove Composite High School with a modest art scholarship for her work as a visual artist. She worked for a year - just long enough to pay admission fees for college. College was an adventure that took her to British Columbia, where she attended the University College of the Fraser Valley, studying Apparel Design in the Fine Arts Department. Today she's designing, stitching and beading intricate moccasins, jewelry and garments.

Coca-Cola and the Olympic Movement

The Coca-Cola Company has been associated with the Olympic Games since 1928 and is the longest continuous corporate supporter of the Olympic Movement. Through the Olympic Games, Coca-Cola encourages people to create their own path of "positivity" in everyday life by believing that anything is possible. The Company's sponsorship supports National Olympic Committees in more than 200 countries to help athletes train and compete.

Coca-Cola in Canada

The Coca-Cola Company is the world's largest beverage company. In Canada, the Company is represented by its subsidiary, Coca-Cola Ltd. (Coca-Cola in Canada). Coca-Cola is Canada's largest beverage company. Coca-Cola in Canada markets three of Canada's top nonalcoholic sparkling beverage brands, Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Sprite, and the leading ready-to-drink tea: Nestea. In addition, our subsidiary is the largest juice and juice drinks company with Minute Maid, Five Alive and Fruitopia. The Company also markets DASANI, PowerAde and other hot and cold beverages.

For more information about Coca-Cola in Canada, please visit our website at www.cocacola.ca or our parent company's website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.


For further information: For further information: Media Inquiries - Kirsten Mihailides, Manager Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola's Vancouver 2010 Olympic Project Team, (604) 828-3534

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