About this object

History of use

These 62 small works (3223/1-62) comprise a collection of drawings in pencil, ink, pencil crayon, and felt pen made by the artist between the years 1968 and 2015. During that period the artist has identified himself by the following names: Ron Hamilton; Hupquatchew; Ki-ke-in; Kwayatsapalth; Chuuchkamalthnii; and Haa’yuups. The drawings are, for the most part, applied to the backs of bookmarks acquired from a range of bookshops; some are applied to other pieces of paper or cutouts from his earlier silkscreen prints. Many of the images represent killer whales, often in conjunction with accoutrements and symbols of Nuu-chah-nulth whaling. The juxtaposition of bookmark and representation of Nuu-chah-nulth himwits’a, or narrative, is a deliberate and meaningful placement of two distinct knowledge systems in relationship with one another. Ephemeral drawings like these were not created for the market; the artist has long made them for himself and sometimes as gifts for relatives and friends; they are a way of sharing his knowledge and experience about Nuu-chah-nulth ways of knowing, thinking about, and being in this world; they are expressive of what he calls kiitskiitsa: marks made with intention.

Physical description

A pencil drawing on a paper fragrance advertisement. The front-side is a hand-drawn image of a sea lion(?) set against a white background. The sea lion is horizontally oriented on the paper; the head is positioned at the right edge of the page where the corners are squared, and the tail is drawn towards the left edge where the paper is rounded. Its teeth are bared, the eye is drawn inside an elongated diamond-shape, and small arches, drawn below and to the right of the eye, are shaded in with pencil. The side of the body is decorated with crisscrossing assemblages of grey lines in varying lengths and thicknesses. The right fore flipper is unshaded and is embellished with an ovoid, a shaded arch, a shaded tower-shape, and a crescent. The underbelly and back of the sea lion are outlined in pencil but remain white. A human skull is drawn at the base of the sea lion's body, below the tail. Four horizontal lines give definition to the hind flippers. A circle filled with foliage designs is imprinted to the left of the drawing where the left edge of the page is rounded; this is visible on both the front and reverse-side of the paper. The reverse-side of the paper is machine printed. The right edge of the paper is lined with a gold border. To the left, gold text encircles an image of a lion standing on a crown. In the center of the page, "Doulton" is printed horizontally in black ink. The circular foliage imprint is located at the left edge.