Where the Thunderbird
cultural resilience on the Northwest
Coast of North America
23 February – 27 August 2017
Supported by the High Commission of Canada in the UK.
Additional support by
Steven Larcombe and Sonya Leydecker
PF Charitable Trust
Recommend this exhibition
Club depicting a Thunderbird. Nuu-chah-nulth, Nootka Sound, North America, 1780s.
This exhibition showcases the rich cultural heritage of Northwest Coast Peoples through remarkable and powerful objects spanning thousands of years.
Northwest Coast Peoples inhabit the
mountainous fjords, lush islands and temperate forests that stretch
along the coastline from Alaska, British Columbia and Washington
state. They have created some of the most extraordinary carving and
weaving traditions in North America. In this exhibition, explore
these rich traditions through objects including ceremonial masks
and rattles, elegantly woven robes and baskets, and contemporary
prints and jewellery.
The exhibition reveals the stories and histories behind the works of art that have united generations and provided stability in the face of change. The display features many images of the legendary Thunderbird, who uses his great strength and power to hunt whales – a skill he gave to some communities. Objects dating from 600 BC to the present day highlight the resilience of Northwest Coast Peoples, who maintain their identity and way of life in a rapidly changing world.