Sanford Williams



Esperanza, BC

Sanford Williams has made it his life’s work creating art that echoes the past of the First Nations folk of British Columbia. From a young age, he and his family lived in isolation at Yuquot – the territory now famous for receiving Captain Cook and his Resolution crew in 1778. This sort of seclusion gave Sanford an opportunity to hone his craft without outside influence from the city. As a young artist, Sanford was inspired by his relatives, notably his uncle – the late Chief Dominic Andrew. His grandfather was artist Jimmy John. After surviving residential school, Williams graduated in high school in 1985 then attended the Gitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art at ‘Ksan in Old Hazelton, BC, where he trained under the guidance of master carvers Ken Mowatt and Vernon Stephens. He stayed on as a substitute instructor and worked on large pieces with other master carvers for various organizations in northern BC.