Drawing Item Number: 3223/38 from the MOA: University of British Columbia


A drawing on a single-sided piece of paper. The drawing and paper are vertically oriented. The paper is cut at an angle along the top edge; the left edge of the page is longer than the right edge. A black fin, decorated with a purple oval and cross, a purple tower-shape, a purple arch filled with a crisscross pattern, and a purple asterisk, is drawn at the top of the page. Below, a green triangle embellished with a pattern of green crisscrossing lines extends from the left edge of the page. Further down, a purple triangle decorated with a pattern of purple crisscrossing lines extends from the right edge of the page. The area between the two triangles is coloured yellow and a swirl of purple dots is centrally positioned. The right half of a human skull, drawn in green ink, extends from the bottom of the purple triangle. The reverse-side of the paper is blank.

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.