ENRICH your MIND through our selection of best reads on Indigenous art and culture.

  • Susan Point: Works On Paper

    Gary Wyatt

    $29.95 CAD

    A gorgeous collection of prints by one of the Northwest’s leading artists

    Over the past thirty years Susan Point has become the preeminent Coast Salish artist of her generation, exploring many different modern and traditional themes in a wide variety of media. She has received major public commissions in her home province of British Columbia as well as throughout the Northwest coast, the traditional territory of her people, creating extraordinary monumental sculptures that grace important public buildings. Her glass sculptures are collected around the world.

    This is the first book devoted exclusively to her works on paper. Over the past thirty years Point has been an innovator in printmaking, adapting traditional Coast Salish themes to modern art techniques, translating the heritage of her culture to the wider world while creating a body of work that appeals to art collectors from around the globe. Her synthesis of contemporary and traditional styles has resulted in a formidable artistic accomplishment. This beautifully designed volume collects 160 of her prints together for the first time and is sure to inspire and amaze those who see it.

    Published in 2014

    Softcover

  • Understanding Northwest Coast Art

    Cheryl Shearer

    $22.95 CAD

    This easily read book introduces the reader to various symbols, crests and beings depicted in Northwest Coast artworks. Shearer provides brief descriptions of design conventions, elements and differences between cultural groups while explaining the interconnections between art, myth and ceremony.

    Published in 2000

    Softcover

  • The Way Home: David Neel

    David Neel

    $32.95 CAD

    David Neel was an infant when his father, a traditional Kwakiutl artist, returned to the ancestors, triggering a series of events that would separate David from his homeland and its rich cultural traditions for twenty-five years. When he saw a potlatch mask carved by his great-great-grandfather in a museum in Fort Worth, Texas, the encounter inspired the young photographer to rekindle a childhood dream to follow in the footsteps of his father.

    Drawing on memories, legends, and his own art and portrait photography, David Neel recounts his struggle to reconnect with his culture after decades of separation and a childhood marred by trauma and abuse.  He returned to the Pacific Coast in 1987, where he apprenticed with master carvers from his father’s village. The art of his ancestors and the teaching of the people he met helped to make up for the last years and fuelled his creativity.  His career as a multi-media artist also gave him the opportunity to meet and photograph leading artists, knowledgeable elders, and prominent people from around the world.  In time he was a recognized artists, with his artwork presented in more than forty solo and sixty group exhibitions.

    The Way Home is an uplifting tale that affirms the healing power of returning home.  It is also a testament to the strength of the human spirit to overcome great obstacles, and to the power and endurance of Indigenous culture and art.

    Softcover

  • People Among the People: The Public Art of Susan Point

    Robert D. Watt

    $50.00 CAD

    Susan Point’s unique artworks have been credited with almost single-handedly reviving the traditional Coast Salish art style. Once nearly lost to the effect of colonization, the crescents, wedges, and human and animal forms characteristic of traditional Coast Salish art can now been seen around the world – reinvigorated with modern materials and techniques – in her serigraphs and public art installations, as well as the works of a new generation of artists that she’s inspired.

    While the images and symbolism of Point’s work are often informed by surviving traditional Salish works and the Traditional Knowledge of her Musqueam family and Elders, she has developed a unique and contemporary style that continues to evolve.

    People Among People beautifully displays the breadth and depth of her public art, from cast bronze faces in Whistler to massive carved cedar portals in Stanley Park to moulded polymer murals in Seattle.

    Through interviews and archival access, Robert D. Watt gathers the story of each piece, often in Point’s own words, to illustrate the vital role she has played in revealing the re-establishing the “Salish footprint” in the Pacific Northwest.  An artist’s statement by Point and an essay by Dr. Michael Kew complete this portrait of a profoundly moving collection of artworks.

    Hardcover

  • Bill Reid Collected

    Martine J. Reid

    $19.95 CAD

    Over his lifetime, Bill Reid (1920 – 1998) created many historic sculptures, paintings jewellery pieces and serigraphs inspired by his Haida heritage. The large bronze sculpture The Spirit of Haida Gwaii, nicknamed The Jade Canoe and displayed at the Vancouver International Airport, and The Raven and the First Men, a yellow cedar carving, have both been featured on the Canadian $20 bill. In addition to the immense praise he received for his artwork, Reid was also the recipient of the National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Lifetime Achievement in 1994. This volume showcases more than 150 of Reid’s most significant works in beautiful photographs.

    Softcover

  • Finding A Voice: The Art of Norman Tait

    Vickie Jensen

    $85.00 CAD

    This catalogue was published by Nisga’a Museum in conjunction with the exhibition Finding A Voice: The Art of Norman Tait held at Nisga’a Museum from May 30 to August 29, 2015 and at the West Vancouver Museum from October 14 to December 5, 2015.

    Norman Tait (b. 1941) has been devoted to art since childhood. Imbued with a deep connection to his Nisga’a heritage and family, Tait has utilized his artistic gifts and transcended the quotidian to create the extraordinary. Self-taught, this self-critical and highly engaged artist has, over the past five decades, researched and explored his Nation’s rich cultural heritage and forged a voice for himself that speaks through his myriad of sculptural and two dimensional works. This voice is driven by a passion to reinvent traditional narratives within a contemporary context and provide ways in which to connect his ancestral heritage to today’s fast paced and changing world.

    Authors:
    Karen Duffek is the Curator of Contemporary Visual Arts & Pacific Northwest at the UBC Museum of Anthropology (MOA). Her research focus lies both in the history of Northwest Coast Aboriginal collections―including connecting and documenting historical objects, particularly those made and used during the period of potlatch prohibition, with descendants and originating community members―and in the relationship of contemporary art to cultural practice. Among her many exhibitions are Projections: The Painted Art of Henry Speck, Udzi’stalis (co-curated with Marcia Crosby, 2012) and a collaboration with artist Peter Morin in Peter Morin’s Museum (2011), both at MOA’s Satellite Gallery; Border Zones: New Art across Cultures (MOA, 2010); Robert Davidson: The Abstract Edge (MOA, with tour to the National Gallery of Canada, 2044-2007); and with Tom Hill, the now historical Beyond History (Vancouver Art Gallery, 1989). Her publications include the webzine borderzones.ca (2010) and the books Bill Reid and Beyond: Expanding on Modern Native Art (co-edited with Charlotte Townsent-Gault, 2004), Robert Davidson: The Abstract Edge (2004), and the Transforming Image: Painted Arts of Northwest Coast First Nations (co-authored with Bill McLennan, 2000).

    Vickie Jensen is a Vancouver-based photographer and author who began photographing Norman Tait’s work in the mid 1980s. She wrote her first book, Where the People Gather: Bringing a Log to Life, (reprinted in paperback as Totem Pole Carving), based on three months of intense collaboration as Tait and his crew carved a 42-foot doorway pole. “We talked, discussed the photos I was taking, shared the meals I cooked―it was a transforming experience in my life. And getting to know Norman’s family was an unexpected bonus. “ Jensen also wrote about this pole in the children’s book Carving a Totem Pole and has featured Tait’s work in a third book, The Totem Poles of Stanley Park, expanded and re-titled in 2015 as Totem Poles and the Lure of Stanley Park. As of 2005 her extensive text and photo documentation of Norman Tait’s career is part of the Jensen-Powell Fonds housed in the Museum of Anthropology Archives.

    Darrin Martens is currently the Chief Curator of the Audain Art Museum. Prior to this position he served as the Director of the Nisga’a Museum and Director/curator of Burnaby Art Gallery. Martens has a Master’s degree in Art History from the University of British Columbia with a focus on Critical Curatorial Studies. He is also a fellow of Claremont Graduate University’s J. Paul Getty Foundation’s Museum Leadership Institute. Prior to his studies at UBC he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Regina. Marten’s passion lies in exploring Canadian art history and in particular artists of First Nations heritage. He has curated over 50 exhibitions and contributed to over 30 publications.

    Shirley Morven, whose Nisga’a name is Angaye’e, was born in Gitlaxt’aamiks, British Columbia. She is one of the members of the Gitwilnnaak’il’ Wolf clans from that ancient community. She is currently the Chairperson for Nisga’a Lisims Government’s Council of Elders and where she is one of the four national officers. She is also charged with the oversight of Collections and Exhibitions on the Nisga’a Museum Advisory Committee. She has served in several other capacities over her lifetime, always with a focus on formal and traditional Nisga’a practices. She has functioned as District Principal for Nisga’a Language and Culture for School District # 92. In addition she was chairperson for the Nisga’a Valley Health Board for 1 ½ terms just at the turn of the century, and on the New Aiyansh Band Council for two terms prior to the Nisga’a attaining their autonomy.

    Published in 2015

    Hardcover

  • The Raven Steals the Light

    Robert Bringhurst and Bill Reid

    $14.95 CAD

    Ten masterful, complex drawings by Bill reid are accompanied by ten episodes from Haida mythology told by Bill Reid and Robert Bringhurst.  The result brings Haida art and mythology alive as never before.

    Published in 1996

    Softcover

  • Argillite: Art of the Haida

    Leslie Drew and Douglas Wilson

    $40.00 CAD

    Some of the last copies of this book are available at our gallery as it is no longer being published.

    Drew and Wilson outline the history of the Haida in relation to argillite carving.

    In a key chapter, “A World Apart”, the reader is led through a tangle of Haida beliefs and legends seen through the artist’s mind as he sought to express the world around him.

    The technical aspects of argillite – its nature, how it was quarried, the relationship of the carver to his material, clues to a carver’s identity through his carving style, the transformation of argillite art with the coming of the [Europeans], and its resurgence alongside contemporary art are detailed.

    Argillite is study that will appeal to collectors, students of [First Nations] art and culture, and anyone interested in recapturing the formidable and legendary consciousness of this ancient people.

    Published in 1980

    Hardcover

  • Ḱesu’: The Art & Life of Doug Cranmer

    Jennifer Kramer

    $29.95 CAD

    Northwest Coast Kwakwaka’wakw art is renowned for its flamboyant, energetic, and colorful carving and painting. Among the best-known practitioners was Doug Cranmer, whose style was understated, elegant, fresh, and unique and whose work quickly found an international following in the 1960s. Named K’esu’, or Wealth Being Carved, as a child, he was an early player in the global, commercial art market and one of the first Native artists in British Columbia to own his own gallery. A long-time teacher, he inspired generations of young Native artists in Alert Bay and beyond.

    This beautifully illustrated book is a record of the art, life, and influence of a man who called himself a “whittler” or “doodler” but who embodied “indigenous modern” well before the term had been coined. He pioneered abstract and non-figurative paintings using Northwest Coast ovoids and U-shapes; embraced the practice of silk-screening on wood, paper, and burlap; and adapted power tools to new applications in art. Skillfully weaving recollections from his friends and family, facts about his life and examples of his stunning artwork, K’esu’ is a wide-ranging celebration of Doug Cranmer and his profound influence on Kwakwaka’wakw art.

    Published in 2012

    Paperback

  • Red: A Haida Manga

    Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas

    $19.95 CAD

    An innovative graphic novel, Red is the epic tale of a Haida hero, his rage and his quest for retribution.

    Referencing a classic Haida oral narrative, this stunning full-colour graphic novel documents the powerful story of Red, a leader so blinded by revenge that he leads his community to the brink of war and destruction.

    Set in the islands off the northwest coast of B.C., it tells the tale of orphan Red and his sister, Jaada. When raiders attack their village, Red, still a boy, escapes dramatically. But Jaada is whisked away. The loss of Jaada breeds a seething anger, and Red sets out to find his sister and exact revenge on her captors.

    Red blends traditional Haida imagery into a Japanese manga-styled story. Tragic and timeless, it is reminiscent of such classic stories as Oedipus Rex, Macbeth and King Lear.

    This innovation in contemporary storytelling consists of 108 pages of hand-painted illustrations. When arranged in a specific order, the panels of the narrative create a Haida formline image four metres long. The sequence for this complex design is displayed on the inside jacket.

    Published in 2009

    Paperback

  • Olaka iku Da Nana – It’s a Good Day Book

    Corrine Hunt

    $20.00 CAD

    “This book tells my story behind the [2010 Olympic] medals – the peace symbol, the soul replaced by the hand, ayasu, “stop hey what’s that sign,” my childhood hippyness all groovy with happiness, a journey to far out places doing things I have never done before like co-designing an Olympic Medal.

    The story is about community, the random nature of connections, the chance meetings, and the simple idea that we need each other to thrive, much like my community which continually supports me in my random acts of madness, kindness or both.” – Corrine Hunt

    Published in 2012

    Hardcover

     

     

  • Haida Monumental Art: Villages of the Queen Charlotte Islands

    George MacDonald

    $80.00 CAD

    George MacDonald, Director of the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottawa, combines ethnohistory, archaeology and stunning photodocumentation to explain the physical and cultural structure of a Haida village.  He shows how architecture and totem poles are an integral part of the social and religious aspects of Haida culture.

    Published in 1994 by Douglas & MacIntyre

    Paperback

     

  • S’abadeb The Gifts: Pacific Coast Salish Art and Artists

    Barbara Brotherton

    $50.00 CAD

    Coast Salish oral traditions, history and artistry from prehistory to the present is captured in this visually stunning book.

    A principal at the heart of Salish culture is a reciprocal exchange of physical, spiritual and intangible gifts, including songs, spirit powers, titles, names, food, natural resources and artistic creations.  The term for “gifts” in Lushootseed, a Coast Salish dialect, is S’abadeb and this book illuminates the concept by exploring the intersection of art with ceremony, oral traditions, the land, and contemporary realities.

    Published in 2008

    Softcover

  • In the Spirit of the Ancestors: Contemporary Northwest Coast Art at the Burke Museum

    Robin K. Wright & Kathryn Bunn-Marcuse

    $52.50 CAD

    In the Spirit of the Ancestors celebrates the vitality of contemporary Pacific Northwest Coast art by showcasing a selection of objects from the Burke Museum’s collection of more than 2,400 late-twentieth- and early-twenty-first-century Native American works.

    Essays focus on contemporary art while exploring the important historical precedents on which so many artists rely for training and inspiration. Margaret Blackman reflects on building one of the largest collections of Northwest Coast serigraphs, and Joe David reminisces about his artistic journey through mask-making. Shaun Peterson, Lisa Telford, and Evelyn Vanderhoop discuss the historical precedents for working in styles that were kept alive only by a few critical artists and are now making a comeback. Robin K. Wright explores the history of box drums and their revival. Emily Moore discusses the repatriation of two stolen house posts and proposes a new concept of “propatriation” to describe the resulting commissioning of contemporary posts to take their place. Kathryn Bunn-Marcuse explores the power of adornment and how clothing, jewelry, and personal adornments like tattooing express tribal and personal identity in ways both connected to the past and grounded in the present.

    The diversity of approaches presented by these contributors speaks to artists, collectors, academics, tribal communities, and all those interested in Pacific Northwest Coast art. Splendid color photographs of works never before published will delight everyone.

    Soft cover

  • Discovering Totem Poles: A Traveller’s Guide

    Aldona Jonaitis

    $19.95 CAD

    An indispensable guide for identifying totem poles along British Columbia’s inside passage from Vancouver to Alaska.

    Whether rising from a forest mist or soaring overhead in parks and museums, magnificent cedar totem poles have captivated the attention and imagination of visitors to Washington State, British Columbia, and Alaska.

    Discovering Totem Poles is the first guidebook to focus on the complex and fascinating histories of the specific poles visitors encounter in Seattle, Victoria, Vancouver, Alert Bay, Prince Rupert, Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands), Ketchikan, Sitka, and Juneau. It debunks common misconceptions about totem poles and explores the stories behind the making and displaying of 90 different poles.

    Travelers with this guide in their pocket will return home with a deeper knowledge about these monumental carvings, their place in history and the people who made them.

    Published in 2012

    Paperback

  • The Whaling People of the West Coast of Vancouver Island and Cape Flattery

    Eugene Arima and Alan Hoover

    $19.95 CAD

    The Whaling People live along the west coast of Vancouver Island and Cape Flattery in Washington. They comprise more than 20 First Nations, including the Nuu-chah-nulth (formerly called Nootka), Ditidaht, Pacheedaht and Makah. These socially related peoples enjoyed a highly organized, tradition-based culture for centuries before Europeans arrived. As whaling societies, they had a unique relationship with the sea.

    This book celebrates the still-thriving cultures of the Whaling People, who survived the devastating effects of colonial power and influences. It features 12 narratives collected from First Nations elders, each illustrated with original drawings by the celebrated Hesquiaht artist, Tim Paul. The book also includes a history of treaty making in BC, leading up to the recently ratified Maa-nulth Treaty signed by five First Nations of the Whaling People.

     

    Published in 2011 by the Royal BC Museum

    Softcover

  • The Magic Leaves: A History of Haida Argillite Carving

    Peter L. Macnair and Alan L. Hoover

    $39.95 CAD

    This book recounts the history of Haida argillite carving since it began in the early 1800s, and describes more than 200 examples from the extensive collection of the Royal British Columbia Museum.

    Argillite is a dense, black shale mined from a quarry on Haida Gwaii, reserved for the exclusive use of Haida carvers. Argillite works are unique in style and character, ranging from ceremonial pipes and model poles to elaborate platters and chests.

    Published in 2002

    Softcover

  • Huupukanum Tupaat : Out of the Mist: Treasures of the Nuu Chah Nulth Chiefs

    Martha Black

    $39.95 CAD

    This visually sumptuous book features works of the historical and contemporary importance of Nuu Chah Nulth art and culture.  It illustrates and documents the traveling exhibition of the same name curated by the Royal British Columbia Museum.

    Huupukwanum and Tupaat are Nuu-chah-nulth words that designate everything a chief owns, including valued hereditary names and songs, objects and dances, rights and privileges, lands and resources.

    These Nuu-chah-nulth concepts introduce non-aboriginal people to the profound philosophical, spiritual and personal connections that these objects had – and continue to have – with Nuu-chah-nulth communities.

    Published in 1999

    Softcover

  • Art of the Northwest Coast

    Aldona Jonaitis

    $32.95 CAD

    Aldona Jonaitis is the Director of the University of Alaska Museum of the North, and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

    An extensive overview of the First Nations art of the Northwest Coast with detailed illustrations and up-to-date maps. This single volume book covers the development of styles by region as well as the art’s meanings in the context of the region’s social history.

    Published in 2006

    Softcover

  • Bella Bella: A Season of Heiltsuk Art

    Martha Black

    $45.00 CAD

    This seminal work focuses on Canada’s premier collection of Heiltsuk art, the R.W. Large Collection in the Royal Ontario Museum, illuminating its early twentieth-century origins and the continuity and power of Heiltsuk cultural expression.

    Published in 1997

    Softcover

  • The Black Canoe: Bill Reid and the Spirit of Haida Gwaii

    Robert Bringhurst and Ulli Steltzer

    $39.95 CAD

    Ulli Steltzer’s photographs, taken over five years, record the genesis and development of the Black Canoe and of each creature within it. The images offer insight into the sculpture’s final form and reveals many aspects of the work otherwise lost forever to view.

    Published in 1995

    Softcover

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