The salmon for the Views on Fifth tower are meant to be swimming up stream to spawn. The top three salmon have already begun their journey up river, while the bottom salmon is waiting in a shallow pool at the bottom of the falls. The building sits on the mouth of the Deschutes River and empties into Budd Inlet, traditionally known to the Squaxin Island people as Steh-Chass (place of the black bear). Before Olympia was settled, that area used to be an estuary with a very diverse ecosystem. There is a movement around Olympia gathering momentum to return that area back to an estuary and remove the fish dam on the Fifth Ave bridge. This installation honors the promise that the ancestors of the Squaxin Island tribe made to the salmon people that humans would always treat the salmon people and their home with respect and reverence. It’s my wish that with the salmon on that building, we will always remember our promise to be stewards of the land and to ensure that the salmon will always have a home to return to.
A limited number of serigraph prints that inspired this project are available for sale.