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 drawing on a dark beige coloured bookmark. The front-side of the bookmark is a hand-drawn image of a sperm(?) whale. The whale is horizontally oriented with it's body extending from the left to the right edge of the bookmark. There is a large hollow oval drawn on the whale's upper jaw. To the right of the oval is a creature. Drawn to the right of that is a human hand with an oval and cross in the palm. The pectoral fin is decorated with a shaded circle enclosed by two larger circles, a creature, and a shaded ovoid. A small dorsal fin extends from a rounded hump three-quarters down the whale's body. The whale's tail is undecorated. The reverse-side of the bookmark is machine-printed in blue ink. The bookstore's logo, three squares in a L-shape, is in the bottom left corner. To the right and extending upwards at a shallow angle is the bookstore's name, "hager books;" and the store's commercial information.