Maynard Johnny Jr., born April 4, 1973 in Campbell River, BC is of Coast Salish descent on his father’s side from Penelakut Island and Kwakwaka’wakw descent on his mother’s side from Cape Mudge on Quadra Island. At the early age of six Maynard began drawing portraits of his family and replicating comics. By the age of seventeen Maynard began to explore North Westcoast Native design and created his first painting on a seven foot by three foot door skin panel. While Maynard is primarily self-taught, he has also studied ancient Coast Salish spindle whorls, rattles and comb designs. Maynard also credits being influenced by other artists such as: Robert Davidson, Mark Henderson and the late Art Thompson. In 1994 Maynard released his first limited edition influenced by his Kwakwaka’wakw side, but by 1995 Maynard felt his Coast Salish connection and dedicated himself to the Coast Salish style. To date Maynard has remained true to mastering his Coast Salish background and has contributed to the Coast Salish renaissance.
Maynard’s work includes logo and identity designs for a variety of organizations and companies. Additionally, his works can be found on movie sets (Say it Ain’t So) and television series (Grey’s Anatomy). Maynard has also had the honour of painting an eight foot by three foot Coho Salmon sculpture that had been donated to the new World Trade Centre in New York, NY following the 9/11 tragedy. Maynard’s work has also been highlighted on cedar chests gifted to the nominees, presenters and performers at the 2009 Juno Awards in Vancouver.
Maynard’s work has been in numerous gallery shows and major Museum exhibitions, such as “S’abadeb”, translating as “The Gifts” highlighting Coast Salish works. Maynard’s design was used on the cover of the S’abadeb exhibitions catalogue. This exhibition was the first of its kind exhibiting ancient pieces with new works from todays’ Coast Salish artists. The S’abadeb exhibition started at the Seattle Art Museum and traveled to the Royal BC Museum. Maynard’s currently working in collaboration with the Kwikwetlem First Nation and the city of Coquitlam that will showcase three of Maynard’s designs. The designs represent the Kwikwetlem peoples’ pre-contact traditions and will be displayed on six window panels at the entrance and exit of the Evergreen Line at the Coquitlam Station.
Maynard feels fortunate to have his work sent and recognized all over the world and will continue to share the beauty of the Coast Salish through graphic painting, wood, glass, large metal sculptures and precious metals.