John Lancaster was born in Alert Bay on Cormorant Island, BC on June 3, 1960 to his Kwakwaka'wakw (formerly Kwakiutl) mother and Caucasian father. He belongs to the Nimpkish Band and began his career as an artist when he was fifteen. John made jewellery carving a full time occupation in 1987. Due to federal law prohibiting the children of mixed marriages to claim their status as Indigenous, John did not receive his Status until after 1985 when the law was repealed. It was then that John dedicated himself fully to Kwakwaka'wakw art with the desire to explore his cultural heritage. His works are created with simple hand tools, some of which are homemade. Through use of simple materials and modest working conditions, his characteristically simple style has evolved. John now lives in Victoria, BC.
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