Perpetual Salish: Contemporary Coast Salish Art from the Salish Weave Collection

Legacy Art Gallery Downtown, Victoria, British Columbia

In this exhibition curated by Coast Salish artist lessLIE, the theme of perpetuation unified the work of five contemporary Coast Salish artists who live and work in this region. The word perpetuation is meant to suggest a continuum of ideas and processes, which come from distinctive traditions that have existed over millennia. Perpetuation also infers some of the challenges that contemporary Coast Salish artists continue to face in the contexts of colonialism and assimilation as well as the dominance of other Indigenous traditions, which were often favoured by the art world, in both commercial and educational contexts. It is only in the last three decades that Coast Salish art has become more readily recognized by a wider audience as distinct from other Northwest Coast traditions.

This exhibition presented a wide range of art forms and ideas to give visitors a better understanding of the cultural and stylistic elements that unify and inspire these contemporary artists in their own artistic practices.

Artists featured: Maynard Johnny Jr., lessLIE, John Marston, Susan Point and Dylan Thomas.

Caroline Riedel, Curator of Collections, University of Victoria Legacy Art Galleries

View a video of artists’ interviews  produced by Justine Auben Drummond and a video of the artworks in this exhibition.

Exhibition photography by Allison Grey-Noble