(1976 - Present, Coast Salish)

     A talented young artist with a flare for the bold and dramatic, Luke Marston combines a deep knowledge of Coast Salish artistic tradition with his own unique personal vision. Inspired early in his career by his parents, carvers Jane and David Marston, Luke worked first with Simon Charlie and later Wayne Young. Luke carved at the Thunderbird Park at the Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria for five years alongside Jonathan Henderson, Sean Whonnock , Sean Karpes and later Gary Peterson and his brother John Marston. Relentlessly working to broaden his horizons, he has explored stone carving, painting, jewelry and printmaking, however the majority of Luke’s work is created in wood. In 2008, Luke and his brother John Marston traveled to Japan as part of a cultural exchange and participated in a show called Bridging the Pacific held at the Canadian Embassy. Luke’s work was included in a traveling exhibition called Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation 2 and in an exhibition of Coast Salish art held at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria from November 2007 to February 2008, called Transporters: Contemporary Salish Art.

     Luke was chosen to carve a bentwood box for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. This box will travel to seven different locations in Canada where it will be used in a healing ceremony for the survivors of the residential schools. Luke is currently carving a totem pole for the Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia, Steven Point, and upon its completion, it will stand at the Government House in Victoria B.C. Luke is at the forefront of the revitalization of Coast Salish art. Luke says, “I feel very fortunate I can be a part of the continuum of this art form and I hope I can produce art with just as much emotional expression as the ancient ones did.” His carvings show a reverence for history and tradition, while expressing optimism that the Salish art form can continue to develop and evolve.

“I am inspired by the legacy of my ancestors. The title “Honouring the Ancient Ones” is a reflection of the respect I feel for the master carvers of long ago. I believe, as an artist, that we have to find a balance between traditional and contemporary art, and at the same time evolve and grow as Coast Salish people.”

- Luke Marston

Luke's interview on GlobalBC Story behind Stanley Park’s new ‘Shore to Shore’ public art.