Generation to Generation

Part of Northwest Coast Hall.

The Generation to Generation gallery within the Northwest Coast Hall contains a cedar pole carving and glass display cases containing works of art. View of the exhibition Generation to Generation in the Northwest Coast Hall.
Denis Finnin/© AMNH

The Generation to Generation exhibition features works by present-day Native artists that illustrate the influence of traditional materials, styles, and stories from past generations on today’s art and culture.

Two basketballs created with traditional designs, mounted side-by-side in a glass display case. Midnight Beast basketball and Beast Collective basketball, 2020 or 2021, by Crystal Kaakeeyaa Worl and Rico Lanaat’ Worl
Denis Finnin/© AMNH
Cape-style wrap sewn with traditional designs. Killer Whale Chilkat Wrap, 2015, by Yolonda Skelton
Denis Finnin/© AMNH

Exhibits include:

  • raven takes plight/days are numbered, 2021, by K.C. Hall. Wood, adhesive, ink, paint, vinyl stickers. Hall, a Haiłzaqv artist, created a skateboard that fuses traditional Native and modern designs.
  • Killer Whale Chilkat Wrap, 2015, by Yolonda Skelton. Italian cashmere, Ultrasuede, metal, leather. Skelton, from the Gitxsan Nation, created the robe in vibrant blue and yellow for her maternal grandmother, who was a Chief. Skelton wanted the piece to be something modern her grandmother could wear anywhere but that represented her status and culture.
  • Graduation Cap, 2020, by Shy Watters. Red cedar, wool, abalone. Watters designed a contemporary-style graduation cap or mortarboard with a pattern that reflects the ocean waves as the Salish Sea ties together her two territories, the Coast Salish and the Kwakwaka’wakw. It also connects the artist to her grandmother and great-grandmother, who were weavers.
  • Midnight Beast basketball and Beast Collective basketball, 2020 or 2021 by Crystal Kaakeeyaa Worl and Rico Lanaat’ Worl. Rubber, polyester, latex glue, multi-colored ink. The Worls, Tlingit/Athabascan artists and siblings, founded Trickster Company with the goal of promoting innovative, affordable Indigenous designs like the ones seen on these basketballs. The designs, according to Rico, place Native art in “a fresh context.”
  • Eagle Vision, 2021, by Louie Gong. Ink on Converse Chuck Taylors (cloth, rubber, metal). Gong, an artist of Nooksack, Chinese, French, and Scottish heritage, explained that his sneaker design signifies the Eagle Vision, “the ability to look at your life from such a high altitude that you can see yourself in historical context.”
  • Haida artist Jaalen Edenshaw carved a touchable, “work-in-progress” 6-foot-long red cedar pole in traditional style for the Museum.