Alan Syliboy - Artist Photo

Alan Syliboy

Alan Syliboy was born and raised in Truro, Nova Scotia. Living in the Millbrook First Nations community, he journeys through his life with a demeanor of strength. An established Mi’kmaq artist, Syliboy’s artistic vocabulary is inspired by the indigenous petroglyphs of Nova Scotia.

1971 Private Study with Artist Shirley Bear
1975 Nova Scotia College of Art and Design Halifax Nova Scotia

Recent Awards:
2012 “Snapshot: East Coast Contemporary Aboriginal Art”, Curator, Khyber Centre for the Arts & Wagmatcook Cultural Centre.
2012 Awarded Canada Council Project Grant for production of “Little Thunder & The Stone Canoe” Exhibit
2010 Shortlisted for the Lieutenant Governor’s Masterworks Art Award for People of the Dawn
2010 Recipient of a Canada Council grant for his work in “Brainstorm” a collaboration with Nance Ackerman (NFB) and Dr. Ivar Mendez
2010 Presented Queen Elizabeth II with portrait of Grand Chief Membertou
2010 Quill Basket Mural, 10’ x 10’ sold to Lord Beaverbrook Art Gallery
2009 “People of The Dawn”, twelve 4’x8’ paintings, Commissioned Mural/2010 Olympics
2009 Lead artist of a Group Sculpture, entitled “Keepers of the Eastern Door” for Vancouver 2010 Olympics
2009 Collaborated with Nance Ackerman (NFB) and Paton Francis to create Animation, “Little Thunder” for Vancouver 2010 Olympics
2007 Atlantic Canadian Export Award from Atlantic Canada Cultural Exports, for “Export success 2007”
2007 Illustrated The Stone Canoe: Two Lost Mi’k Maq Tales, Gaspereau Press
2002 Awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal
2002 Juror, National Aboriginal Achievements Foundation
2001 Commissioned by the Town of Windsor to create a multi-panel mural
2001 Parks Canada, use of images for Tourism brochure
2000 Founding Member, Eastern Aboriginal Artists Collective
1999 Commissioned for design of $200.00 22kt Gold Coin for Royal Canadian Mint
1997 Member, Board of Governors, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design
1996 Two Murals, Youth Correctional Centre, Waterville, Nova Scotia
1996 Member, Board of Directors, Society of Canadian Artists of Native Ancestry
1992 Member, Board of Directors, Cobequid Arts Council
1992 Delegate, Department of External Affairs (Canada) Trade Mission to Japan

Select Exhibitions & Projects:
2018 Exhibit – The Daily Drum Series – Université du Québec à Chicouitim
2018 Thundermaker performance – Solar Festival Halifax Central Library
2018 Thundermaker performance – Open Water Festival Halifax NS
2017 DAREarts Project leader Atlantic Region
2017 New Band “The Thundermakers performed at Stanfest July 1, 2017
2017 FAVA Indigenous Art Exhibit – Caraquet NB
2017 Halifax Common Sign Post Installation – My Common Woods Project
2017 Thundermaker Exhibit Cape Breton University
2016 AGNS Exhibition Halifax & Yarmouth Branches– The Path We Share
2011 4’ x 26’ Mural commissioned by Antigonish Regional Library
2010 Retrospective Exhibit, Klu’skap Art Gallery, Moncton, NB
2010 Art exhibited at the Red Cross Humanitarian Award Dinner
2010 Solo Exhibit at Argyle Fine Art
2009 Little Thunder is Leaving Home, Solo Exhibit Nova Scotia Community College
2007 Marks on the Ground: New and Old, Solo Exhibition for Lorenzo Society, UNBSJ, Saint John, NB
2006 A113 000 Moons, Solo Exhibition at the Marigold Cultural Centre, Truro, Nova Scotia
2003 Group Show, Puy-de-Dome, France
2002 Private Show, Pilar Shepard Gallery, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
2001 Journeys, Group Show, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
2001 Solo Show, Houston North Gallery, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia
2001 Homeboys, Joint show with Alex Janvier, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
2000 Hands of the Ancestors: An Assembly of Algonquin Artists, South Shore Art Center, Cohasset, Massachusetts
2000 “Indian Summer”, Royal Museum of Art & History, Brussels, Belgium
1999 At the Great Harbour, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
1999 Shifting Boundaries, Mary E. Black Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia
1998 Alan Syliboy and Nancy Ackerman, Journey, Multi-cultural Arts Resource Center, Halifax, Nova Scotia
1996 Solo Exhibition, Spectrum Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia
1995 Group Exhibition, Bay of Spirits Gallery, Toronto, Ontario
1994 Solo Exhibition, Gallery Connection, Fredericton, New Brunswick
1993 Group Exhibition, Pel ATuKwey: Let me… tell a story, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Halifax, Nova Scotia
1992 Exhibitor, Calgary International Arts Festival, Calgary, Alberta (1993-1996)
1992 Solo Exhibition, Family, Quest, Strength, Dartmouth Heritage Museum, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
1989 Solo Exhibition, “A” Gallery, Truro, Nova Scotia
1989 Solo Exhibition, Owens Art Gallery, Sackville, New Brunswick
1985 Atlantic Region Indian Art Juried Exhibition, Manuge Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia
1984 Alan Syliboy and Phillip Young, Doomsday Studios, Halifax
1983 Maritime Indian Art Exhibition, Doomsday Studios, Halifax

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
Town of Windsor, Nova Scotia
Innu Nation
Canadian Canoe Museum
National Aboriginal Achievements Foundation
Mashantucket Pequot Indian Nation
Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
Sable Offshore Energy Corporation
Bank of Montreal (featured on cheques)
Canada Post Corporation
Art Collection of the Dept. Of Indian and Northern Affairs
Owens Art Gallery
Nova Scotia Community College

2018 2020 Indigenous Games – Drum image selected in Provinces successful bid application
2018 Interview by Jeff Bear for his Series “13 Indigenous Artists” to be released January 2019
2017 Parrsboro Film Festival – entered Syliboy Films.
2017 Buffy Sainte-Marie interview by Alan Syliboy Decoste Centre Pictou NS
2017 Lunenburg School of the Arts – Joint Art Instructor with Todd Labrador – Making and Painting First Nation Hand Drum.
2017 Sherbrooke Village Exhibit – First Indigenous Artist to make appearance.
2017 Halifax Common Art Installation – Mi’kmaw Signpost
2017 Reveal Indigenous Art Award Winnipeg – Received a $10,000.00 award
2017 Received Honouray Doctorite from STfx University
2016 “The Thundermaker”, was shortlisted and is in contention to become the First Nation Communities Read reading selection for 2016-2017.
2016 2016 Coady Chair in Social Justice at StFX University
2016 The Path We Share Exhibition – AGNS Halifax NS & Yarmouth NS.
2015 Aboriginal Children’s Hurt and Healing Initiative (ACHH).
2015 Released Childrens Book “The Thundermaker” publisher Nimbus
2014-15 Thundermaker Multi-Media Exhibit – Touring 10 Nova Scotia Libraries
2014 Correctional Service Canada – Exploring Culture through Art – 6 Institution Tour
2014 Short Listed for the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award
2014 Selection committee for the New Brunswick Art Bank
2013 Galerie D’art Louise et Reuben-Cohen – Aboriginal Voices Exhibit
2013 Beaverbrook Art Gallery- Open Thundermaker Exhibit
2013 Mural Installation – Halifax Stanfield International Airport
2013 Featured artist – Festival Des Arts Visuel en Atlantiq
2013 Instructor – Direct Perception Program, Dorje Denmaling
2013 Lone Cloud Featured performance Shakespeare in Victoria Park – Mid-summers Night’s Dream
2013 Lone Cloud wins ECMA for Best Aboriginal Album
2012 Juror for Canada Council for the Arts – Ottawa
2012 Elected to the Board of the East Coast Music

“I see making art as a way of organizing chaos. Sometimes within the chaos of making a painting, a symbol in the shape of a moose or a caribou will walk through my consciousness in a form that resembles an ancient petroglyph. My work is inspired by the ancient petroglyphs which were carved in stone by my ancestors on walls in caves. This was their way to capture and respect the spirit of the subject. When I paint these images, I feel I am channeling a way to bring their spirits back into our consciousness. At one time, these drawings were predominant and lived within our culture. Today, most are no longer visible in their original environments, but I believe the earth has a memory of the spirits they contained. My work lives in the moment but is profoundly influenced by the past; this gives me my bearings as an artist, and as a human being. My ancestors have provided me with a spiritual global navigation system, and I like to believe that what I do helps to keep the spirits evolving.”

Alan Syliboy