Jane Marston Kwatleematt
Jane is a Coast Salish First Nation Artist, a mother of seven grown children, and a proud Grandmother. She is well known for her knowledge of Coast Salish religion, and is also an instructor at the Women’s Studies Program at Vancouver Island University – Nanaimo. Jane works in a variety of mediums, but she is most celebrated for her carving. Her main inspiration comes from traditional Salish art and from nature.
She originally started carving under Simon Charlie in 1984, and she continued to work with him until April 2005. She makes a variety of pieces including totem poles, ceremonial rattles, dolls, talking sticks, dancing sticks, paddles, and ceremonial masks.
One of her creations, a totem pole known as the Welcome Figure, is located behind the library at Kwulasulwut gardens on the campus of Vancouver Island University: Nanaimo. It acknowledges and thanks the Snuneymuxw people, on whose traditional land the campus sits.
It is Jane’s belief that traditional symbols are extremely important and necessary, but that we must dream new dreams and invent new art that speaks to us in our present day. In that spirit, she has recently started working with other mediums, such as watercolor.