Looking Forward

Ink on paper

34” x 20”

Artist/Curatorial Statement

My ancestors created an artistic visual language that has continually grown over the ages. Coast Salish crescents, wedges, and positive and negative space are used as a way for telling stories, honouring people and places, and honouring the past. With this in mind, I try to see things the way my ancestors saw them long ago, and make choices in my artwork that honour their legacy.

This design is about honouring the past while we move forward together. While I define and appreciate the journey I have been on, it teaches me to look towards what comes next, and how to get there. The only thing we as people can really do is keep moving forward. We must anticipate our actions becoming our circumstances.

The mosaic I have designed, made up entirely of Coast Salish design elements, is meant to represent the interconnecting of people today. I used the image of a tree because they are timeless and long lasting community members of nature. Trees tell stories that endure 100s of years.

I believe this will help retell people that in order to move forward, we can only do it together as community members.

This image also shows a full blue moon in daylight, symbolic of Mother Earth’s watchful eye, as she grants us a new horizon to discover and understand.

Thomas Cannell