A stunning tribute to the art and life of one of the greatest Indigenous carvers of the last fifty years Born in 1955 on Village Island, Kingcome Inlet, British Columbia, Beau Dick was a Kwakwaka'wakw artist, activist and teacher. He lived and worked in Alert Bay. Although foremost an artist, Dick was actively engaged in all aspects of Kwakwaka'wakw culture: studying and revivifying the traditions of carving, dancing, and storytelling. From the age of fourteen Dick trained with his grandfather and father. His skills were further enhanced when he spent a period in Victoria working with his uncle, Henry Hunt. Dick later worked with many other artists, including Tony Hunt, Bill Reid, Robert Davidson and Doug Cranmer. He was part of a team of carvers working under the direction of Cranmer that recreated the 'Namgis Big House in 'Yalis. Dick's appreciation for Kwakwaka'wakw heritage inspired him to become involved in ceremony and the Hamatsa society of his nation and it has both imbued his work with the long traditions of Kwakwaka'wakw culture and embedded it within them. In 1986 Dick created a transformation mask for Expo '86 which now hangs in the Canadian Museum of History, in Gatineau, Quebec.
Darrin Martens is the Gail and Stephen A. Jarislowsky Chief Curator at the Audain Art Museum in Whistler, British Columbia. He previously worked as the director of the Nisga'a Museum in Northern BC, and, prior to that, had a long stretch as the director-curator of the Burnaby Art Gallery. Through these positions, he has developed a reputation as a curator with a thoughtful approach to First Nations and historic Canadian art and the more complicated issues, such as repatriation, that surround presenting these objects.