Atheana Picha

Residency: January 30 – February 18, 2023

Atheana Picha is a Salish artist from the Kwantlen First Nation, and her grandmother was from Tsartlip. Atheana was given the name Nash’mene’ta’naht by Gerry Oleman from the St’at’imc First Nation, which translates to “Go-getter Woman”. Born in Vancouver, she grew up in and works out of Richmond, BC. She is an interdisciplinary artist, working mostly in 2-dimensional media. Atheana has been doing two apprenticeships learning Salish wool weaving with Musqueam weaver Debra Sparrow since 2019, and learning silver engraving, wood carving, and tool making with Squamish artist and educator Aaron Nelson-Moody since 2018. Atheana’s practice is grounded in learning more about Salish design through studying the old pieces, observing nature, and learning from her elders and teachers.

During this residency Atheana will be creating work responding to her and her family’s history in Steveston as fishermen and Coast Salish people. Through Atheana’s work with Coast Salish iconography she will create work about the land, water, sky, and the communities and culture of the area. Atheana’s work is closely connected to her maternal grandmother’s history, and her grandmother had spent many years working at the Gulf of Georgia cannery just down the water from where the Blue Cabin is currently moored.

Photo of Atheana Picha. Courtesy of the artist.