Fully illustrated and engagingly written, K'esu' is the first book to honour this Kwakwaka'wakw artist's ground-breaking work Northwest Coast.
Kwakwaka'wakw art is renowned for its flamboyant, energetic and colourful carving and painting. Among the leading practitioners was Doug Cranmer, whose style was understated, elegant and fresh and whose work quickly found an international following in the 1960s. 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, British Columbia, and across the province. To date, however, his considerable contributions have gone largely unrecognized. This beautifully illustrated book is a record of the art, life and influence of a man who embodied "indigenous modern" before the term had been coined but preferred the descriptor "whittler" or "doodler" to "Kwakwaka'wakw artist."
Skillfully weaving excerpts from his friends and family, facts about his life and examples of his stunning artwork, K'esu' captures the artist's personality and his paradoxes in this wide-ranging celebration of Cranmer, his oeuvre and his profound influence on generations of Kwakwaka'wakw artists.
March to September 2012
Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver