The Mar Poles
By David Campion and Sandra Shields
Curator Susan Rowley
This work plays on the name of Marpole, the Vancouver neighbourhood built on top of the ancient city of c̓әsnaʔәm. Instead of the house posts and carved figures of the Coast Salish longhouse, the work shows the pillars and poles of today, reconceptualizing what we see in the present as an entry point to the past.
Sharing a distrust of dominant social mythologies, artists David Campion and Sandra Shields use their work to explore power and its repercussions. Shields comes to the subject of colonialism as the great-granddaughter of pioneers. Campion approaches from the vantage point of an immigrant from Britain whose youth was spent in apartheid South Africa.
Campion and Shields’s words and photographs appear in books, galleries, and museums. Recent work includes their collaboration with Stó:lō Nation on Man Turned to Stone: T’xwelátse (Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford, 2011).
This work is curated in relation to the theme of ćәsnaʔәm, the city before the city, an exhibition developed by the Museum of Vancouver, the Museum of Anthropology, and the Musqueam Cultural Education Resource Centre. Thanks to InTransit BC.