Jared Brown was born August 7, 1985 and raised in Terrace B.C. Jared is a Kitsumkalum First Nation descendant studying under the tutelage of the world renowned masters at the Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art. This began as a journey of self discovery that led him to the grandmother isle of Hawaii – Kauai – where he quickly learned “paradise isn’t paradise if it isn’t yours.” This “mind altering experience” led him to the paradise of Kitsumkalum, BC. While speaking to his elder (matriarch of the village) he was given a new name “Gilskneesk da nah wil Ksa’waagtk” (looking back on his roots) and was guided to take a look at the history of his forefathers which led him to dive into becoming a Northwest Coast artist. A Tsimshian from his father’s side, a nation boasting an art style unique in the world, he has begun a journey of meeting relatives, resurrecting culture, and learning his roots.
My reasons for doing this project stems from a need to express myself creatively in a style that has more meaning and history to it personally than any other form of art. I use the art itself as a medium (communication). I realize the need to maintain the traditional look and style of Northwest Coastal Art but I intend to modernize the ideas. Each piece has a great deal of meaning to me personally because I feel they should represent my heritage that is Kitsumkalum.
I painted houses professionally from the age of 17 until I felt I the need at 24 to make a change for the better. I wanted to learn about my aboriginal community so when the opportunity arose to study at the Freda Diesing school—which is located where I was raised—I didn’t hesitate. I knew how to make things look good from my experience as a contract painter. I study martial arts also and achieved technical ability from applying myself to certain disciplines. The same could be achieved by applying myself to this form of art because there is a structured method to it as well as rules. It is just a matter of time before success will be attained from it.
Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art, 2011
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