Born in 1973 in Duncan, British Columbia, lessLIE’s “colonized, Catholic, Canadian name” is Leslie Robert Sam. His “decolonized artist’s name” is lessLIE. Picasso once said that “art is a lie that tells the truth.” lessLIE is living this perspective in the spirit of trickster traditions. lessLIE has a Bachelor of Arts degree in First Nations Studies from Malaspina University-College. While working on this undergraduate degree, lessLIE began to study Coast Salish art in 1995. lessLIE is currently working on a Master of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Coast Salish art at the University of Victoria.
Works by lessLIE can be found in the collections of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Canada, and the Westfälisches Museum für Naturkunde (Landesmuseum und Planetarium) in Münster, Germany. The Two Rivers Gallery in Prince George, British Columbia presented a solo exhibition of his work in 2009 and Alcheringa Gallery has presented three solo exhibitions of his work so far.