Syllabic Translator

i u a pi pu pa ti tu ta ki ku ka gi gu ga mi mu ma ni nu na si su sa li lu la ji ju ja vi vu va ri ru ra qi qu qa ngi ngu nga lhi lhu lha

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Art Thompson

Nuu Chah Nulth

(1948-2003)

First Name: Art   

Last Name: Thompson

Full Name: Art Thompson

Alternative Names: Tsa-qwa-sup

Date of birth: December 10, 1948

Place of birth: Whyac, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

Date of death: 2003

Place of death: 

Community/Heritage: Nuu-chah-nulth (Ditidaht), Nitinaht Band, Nootkan people

Sex: Male

Art Media: carving, engraving jewellery, screen prints 

Bio: 

Art Thompson was born in 1948 in the village of Whyac. He belongs to the Nitinaht Band of the West Coast (Nootkan) peoples. Thompson has ancestral roots in both the Coast Salish (Cowichan) and Nuu-chah-nulth (Ditidaht) nations. Both Thompson’s father and grandfather were artists known for their ceremonial masks and regalia, as well as for totem poles and canoes. His grandmother was an accomplished basket maker.

Thompson spent most of his childhood away from both his family and cultural traditions. At the age of two, he contracted tuberculosis and was hospitalized at Nanaimo Indian Hospital for three years. Shortly after returning to his family, he was sent away to Alberni Residential School in Port Alberni, where he completed his Grade 8 level. 

Despite being born into a well-established line of artists, Thompson’s development as a maker was not immediate. He spent several years logging on Vancouver Island, attended Commercial Art School in Victoria and travelled across Canada. He also spent some time in Florida where he worked for a yacht-building company. It was only upon his return home to Whyac that he began to seriously carve and design under the guidance of his father. Thompson later studied and worked with artists Ron Hamilton and Joe David. 

Exhibitions

  • 2016: Emerging Through the Fog: Tsa-qwa-supp and Tlehpik - Together, Legacy Art Galleries, University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
  • 2017-2018: Point of Contact, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Collections

  • Museum of Civilization in Hull, Quebec, Canada
  • Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
  • The Canadian High Commission, Singapore
  • Stanford University, California, United States

Artwork

Title Last Sold At Auction
AH-DISS (CRANE - FROG MAKER) 2018-01 (January 2018)
CARVED AND PAINTED CEDAR MASK 2011-07 (July 2011)
DANCE OF THE PRINCESS 2017-12 (December 2017)
FIRST FISHERMAN 2018-01 (January 2018)
MASK 2020-10 (October 2020)
MOSQUITO 2019-04 (April 2019)
OPPOSING SPIRITS 2017-11 (November 2017)
SUN MASK 2019-10 (October 2019)
ULTHL-MUCK-CO (YELLOW CEDAR MAN) 2015-10 (October 2015)
UNTITLED; THUNDERBIRD EATING A WHALE 2010-10 (October 2010)
WHALE SPIRIT; KWAKIUTL PUGWIS 2010-10 (October 2010)

Recent Auction Results

MASK
Estimate: 1,500 — 2,500
Sold: Oct 2020 — Sold For: $1,560
SUN MASK
Estimate: 4,000 — 6,000
Sold: Oct 2019 — Sold For: $14,400
MOSQUITO
Estimate: 100 — 150
Sold: Apr 2019 — Sold For: $252
FIRST FISHERMAN
Estimate: 150 — 250
Sold: Jan 2018 — Sold For: $276
AH-DISS (CRANE - FROG MAKER)
Estimate: 150 — 250
Sold: Jan 2018 — Sold For: $300
DANCE OF THE PRINCESS
Estimate: 125 — 175
Sold: Dec 2017 — Sold For: $288

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