Home / News / Native Lens: Artist Erik Sanchez

Native Lens: Artist Erik Sanchez


Native Lens


Artist Erik Sanchez is a Shoalwater Bay Indian from the mouth of the Columbian River in Tokeland, Washington. In his thoughtful, observational film, he shares his personal view of the Shoalwater Bay Indian Reservation. In this story, he shares his life during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Being a storyteller, I have learned that I get my inspiration from being on this land,” Erik says. “I believe that the power of creativity comes into us [Shoalwater Bay Indians] by never being relocated and working on the land our ancestors have lived on since time immemorial.” Shoalwater Bay Indians are known for their creativity.

Sanchez shares that his life has been “basically the same” during COVID-19 except that right now, at home, he is making more art. The reservation has yet to have a positive case, and some locals attribute this to the high coastal winds blowing the virus away. Regardless of the pandemic, the Shoalwater Bay reservation is a quiet place. Erik says that this makes it the perfect backdrop for his photography practice.

Follow Native Lens on Instagram @native_lens_, or Rocky Mountain PBS and KSUT Tribal Radio on Facebook, to watch each Native Lens submission as it is shared.

The project is accepting submissions from Native and Indigenous storytellers far and wide. Visit nativelens.org to learn how you can share a story.

More News Like This