Robin K. Wright
Professor, Art History
Director, Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art
Curator of Native American Art, Burke Museum
Burke Museum, room 110
Bill Holm Center Endowed Professor
M.A., University of Washington, 1977
Ph.D., University of Washington, 1985
Native American Art
Nineteenth Century Haida Art
I have taught art history at the University of Washington since 1985 and have a joint appointment as Curator of Native American Art at the Burke Museum. My research, teaching, and curatorial work center on the Native arts of the Pacific Northwest Coast, in particular nineteenth century Haida art. Since 2003, I have directed the Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art at the Burke Museum, a globally accessible learning center to promote scholarly research on Northwest Coast Native art, increase Native and public access to research resources, and foster appreciation and understanding of Native art of the Pacific Northwest Coast.
I am currently researching the set of Skidegate Haida house and pole models made in 1892 for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Twenty-nine model houses, most with frontal poles, and 16 free-standing model poles were commissioned by James Deans for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. This is a collaborative project with the Skidegate Haida community, the Haida Gwaii Museum in Skidegate, B. C. to develop a traveling exhibit of the house models, and document them in a book. This research has been partially funded by the UW Royalty Research Fund, Canadian Embassy Senior Fellowship, National Endowment for the Humanities, and UW College of Arts and Sciences. See:http://www.washington.edu/burkemuseum/bhc/projects_skidegate.html
ART H 435 – Themes and Issues in Native American Art
ART H 533 – Graduate Seminar in Native American Art
Selected Publications:"Zacherias and the Chicago Settee: Connecting the Masterpiece to the Master," American Indian Art Magazine, 35 (1) 2009: 68-75.
Northern Haida Master Carvers. Seattle: University of Washington Press; 2001
"Two Haida Artists from Yan: Will John Gwaytihl and Simeon Stilthda Please Step Apart?," American Indian Art Magazine 23 (3): (Summer 1998): 42-57, 106-107
"Hlgas7agaa: Haida Argillite," in Steve Brown (ed) Spirit Within: Northwest Coast Native Art from the John H. Hauberg Collection. New York and Seattle: Rizzoli and Seattle Art Museum, 1995 (131-141)
"Kadashan's Staff: The Work of a Mid-19th Century Haida Argillite Carver in Another Medium," American Indian Art Magazine 17 (4) Autumn 1992: 48-55
A Time of Gathering - Native Heritage in Washington State. Seattle: Burke Museum and University of Washington Press, 1991
Selected Multimedia Publications:"Skidegate Haida Model Houses and Poles,"
"The Enduring Power of Totem Poles,"
"Totem Poles: Heraldic Columns of the Northwest Coast", American Indians of the Pacific Northwest Digital Collection