Artware - Northwest Coast Designs & Everyday Objects

October 29, 2014 – January 11, 2015

Artware is a micro exhibition (in our studio space) that showcases Aboriginal-themed commercial products developed by Vancouver- based artists and companies.

The objects selected will highlight shifts in relationships between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples, as illustrated in the design of the objects themselves and in the exchanges and practices to which they give rise.

In the Pacific Northwest, Aboriginal designs adorn private spaces and public places, as well as clothing worn and objects owned by Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples alike. Vancouver in particular is well known for its public displays of Northwest Coast art, in parks, at the airport and in museums. This art can also be found in many private homes – and not just hung on walls and placed on mantelpieces, but also in kitchen cupboards and bedroom closets.


In addition to being increasingly treated as a form of fine art, Northwest Coast designs are now also being mechanically reproduced on many decorative and utilitarian objects, such as mugs, pepper-grinders, tote bags, and T-shirts. Far from being souvenirs purchased only by tourists, these objects are very popular among locals, including Aboriginal individuals who use and wear them in their everyday life, as well as distribute them as potlatch gifts.

Anthropologist and guest curator Solen Roth conducted a year-long fieldwork in the city of Vancouver, examining the current configuration of the Native Northwest Coast artware industry. She’s interviewed a large number of local aboriginal artists, as well as aboriginal and non-aboriginal artware companies.

Artware features work by the following artists: Corey Moraes (Tsimshian), Corrine Hunt (Komoyue/Tlingit), Alano Edzerza (Tahltan), Shain Jackson (Sechelt), and Lyle Wilson (Haisla).



Institutional Partners: