First Name: Luke
Last Name: Marston
Full Name: Luke Marston
Alternative Names: Ts’uts’umutl
Date of birth: 1976
Place of birth: Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada
Community / Heritage: Coast Salish
Art Media: Wood, gold, silver.
Luke Marston is a Canadian Coast Salish artist born in 1976 on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Marston grew up in a family of artists and has been carving since he was a child. His parents, Jane and David Marston, are both experienced carvers who introduced their son to art and woodworking.
Marston learned design and detail finishing from Haida/Nisga’a artist Wayne Young. He also worked with Simon Charlie, a Coast Salish elder and artist, learning Salish history and traditions. In 1999, Marston assisted Charlie with carving of four house posts for a public school in Seattle, Washington. That same year, Marston helped Sean Whonnock and Johnathan Henderson carve and raise a 25-foot totem pole at the Royal British Columbia Museum’s Thunderbird Park; he continued to work there for five years alongside his brother John Marston and Kwakwaka’wakw artist Shawn Karpes.
Marston’s style is characterized as bold and dramatic. He combines his deep knowledge of Coast Salish art, tradition and design with contemporary vision.
Marston has exhibited his work since 2000. He was featured in two major exhibitions: “Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation 2” at New York’s Museum of Arts and Design in 2005, and “Transporters: Tradition and Innovation” at the Victoria Art Gallery in 2007.
In 2008, Marston travelled to Japan with his brother John to participate in a cultural exchange called Ome Art Jam. The Marston brothers participated in a series of demonstrations, collaborations, exhibitions, and performances of mask dancing.
Commissioned by the Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, Marston created the Healing Bentwood Box, representing and honouring the survivors of the Canadian residential school system. The Healing Bentwood Box, also known as the Medicine Box, was a centrepiece of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission that travelled across Canada. It now resides at the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba.
Marston has completed commissions for the Canadian government, the Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, the Vancouver International Airport and the Vancouver Convention Centre.
His masterpiece, Shore to Shore, was unveiled in April 2015 at Brockton Point in Stanley Park, Vancouver, British Columbia. Three years in the making, the 16.5-foot bronze-cast cedar sculpture is a tribute to his ancestors: Joe Silvey, a Portuguese adventurer, and Silvey’s two wives, Kwatleematt and Khaltinaht. Marston is the great-great-grandson of Silvey and Kwatleemaat.
In 2012, Marston was one of 16 sculptors, artists and musicians awarded the prestigious Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by former B.C. Lietenant-Governor Steven Point. Marston received the medal as recognition for his contributions to the community, especially his carving of the Healing Pole, a piece commissioned by Point and installed in Government House in 2009.
- 2005: Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation 2, The Museum of Arts and Design, Manhattan, New York City, United States
- 2007: Transporters: Tradition and Innovation, Victoria Art Gallery The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria , British Columbia, Canada
- 2008: The Canadian Embassy in Japan
- Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
- Inuit Gallery of Vancouver, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
- “Record (Re)Create: Contemporary Coast Salish Art from the Salish Weave Collection”, Comox Valley Art Gallery, Courtenay, British Columbia, Canada
National Gallery of Canada
2012: Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal