As a Chinese Canadian woman living on Coast Salish Traditional Lands, Janey Chang details how she connects to her current home as well as the far away home of her ancestors through the art of fish skin tanning.
An Artist, Maker, Outdoor Experiential Educator, Community Facilitator and Mother on a path to remembering how to be human and alive through the (re)learning of ancestral skills. She is a first generation Chinese Canadian woman living on beautiful Skwxwú7mesh and Tsleil-Waututh Territory at the foot of the mountains and close to the ocean. Her main art form is fish skin leather, where she gives new life to salmon skins that are destined for waste from the restaurant industry. Learning this ancient skill has helped to connect her to her Chinese heritage as well as to K’emk’emelay, the land she now calls home. This passion has evolved into her livelihood, and she has had the honour of teaching fish leather classes to many, including indigenous communities who have distant memories of this old ancestral skill. During the pandemic, she has taken an even deeper dive into the art of making fish skin leather and to teaching classes virtually to local and international audiences.