Spirit and ancestor

Bill Holm, Author, Thomas Burke Memorial Washingt, Photographer, Eduardo Calderon, Photographer University of Washington Press $60 (253p) ISBN 978-0-295-96509-3
Totem poles, halibut hooks and headdresses are some of the exquisite examples of Northwest Coast Indian art featured in this volume, which was conceived to mark the 1985 centennial of the Burke Museum at the University of Washington. After giving a brief, dry history of the museum, curator emeritus Holm (Northwest Coast Indian Art) offers concise descriptions of 100 objects, which are beautifully photographed in color. In clear, thoughtful prose, Holm explains how various tribes in the region transformed the stuff of everyday life and religious ritual into art. Although his text is occasionally repetitious, he succeeds in blending information on the artistic merit, historic value and cultural or practical role of the various objects, which range from an elegant canoe bailer of red cedar to a ferocious helmet that may have been worn by Tlingit warriors who captured and destroyed the Russian fort Archangel Michael in 1802. The book also includes fascinating archival photographs of Native Americans costumed in some of the regalia now in the museum, such as a frighteningly realistic grizzly bear mask. (April)
Reviewed on: 11/02/1987
Release date: 11/01/1987
Paperback - 253 pages - 978-0-295-96510-9
Paperback - 978-0-295-70650-4
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