(1969 - Present)
Chris Paul is a Coast Salish artist from the Tsartlip reserve near Brentwood Bay, British Columbia. He belongs to the Saanich people, and the well he draws his inspiration from is deeply grounded in Saanich stories and culture. What Chris has brought to Salish art with his unique blend of colours is a beautiful combination of traditional and contemporary design.Chris' experience and admiration for Coast Salish art began early in his youth. The traditional events and ceremonies of the Saanich people with their singing, dancing, and storytelling moved him to understand more about himself and his culture, all while sharpening his artistic eye.
In 1995, at the age of twenty-six, he was invited to apprentice under Floyd Joseph, which brought him further into the world of West Coast art. Hungering for more understanding of the ancient techniques, he has studied the works of Charles Elliott, Susan Point, Mark Preston, Joe Wilson, Bill Reid, Robert Davidson, and Roy Henry Vickers. In that same year Chris also began a lifelong friendship with Roy Henry Vickers. Roy’s art and level of excellence moved Chris to request an apprenticeship. Roy agreed, provided that Chris first attend the native art school Roy had graduated from 30 years prior, ‘Ksan, located in Hazelton, British Columbia. At thirty, after having spent a year at ‘Ksan, Chris began an intense two-year apprenticeship with Vickers. As Roy’s apprentice, Chris learned to refine the art he saw, to explore and create. He was taught to manage and market business, and “to do the thing he loves.” It was an intense learning curve and afterwards he was ready to branch out, to discover his personal style and expression. With a new sense of courage and more experience behind him than ever, Chris decided to explore within, to pull upon the roots of his creation, to bring it forth into the light.