Shaun Qwalsius Peterson
Coast Salish Nation
Shaun Peterson was born in Puyallup, Washington in 1975.
He began pursuing the art of his native heritage (Puyallup/Tulalip) shortly after graduating high school. In similar ways to his ancestors, Shaun sought out the guidance of master artisans to share technique, insight, and discipline to the complex world of Northwest Coast Native art. Among the first of the artists to share his experience was artist Steve Brown. Brown’s curatorial knowledge lent to Shaun’s development in being able to characterize the artistic distinctions from one cultural group to the next. All along Shaun’s pursuit to expand his visual vocabulary, he has created many works by way of screen printing, painting, wood, metal and glass sculpture.
In 2005, Shaun received the Native name Qwalsius, which belonged to his great grandfather. In receiving the name by tradition, Shaun accepted responsibility to honour his immediate family through his creative expression as well as his community and ancestors who brought the art to art to where it is now.
Shaun states: “I believe that the art itself has been most responsible for preserving our stories through intrigue and curiosity. Through I work in a variety of media I keep in mind that it’s not the media that drives the works themselves but the story of feeling it is supposed to carry to the observer.”
Shaun gratefully acknowledges his mentors, Greg Colfax (Makah) and Loren White, whose influence brought him to where he is as an individual.
Selected Group Exhibitions:
2011 Coast Salish Masterworks: Connecting the Past to the Present, Coastal Peoples Fine Arts Gallery, Vancouver, B.C.