Cole Speck (Kwakwaka’wakw)


As an apprentice of the late master carver Beau Dick, Cole Speck continues to promote Kwakwaka’wakw culture through his practice, and the gained knowledge from his mentor. Cole Speck is participating in documenta 14 in Athens, Greece, and Kassel, Germany as an apprentice of Beau Dick.

Cole Speck was born on May 1, 1991 and raised on the Namgis reserve on the island of Alert Bay on the northern shore of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. His traditional name is A’Walas K’anis. Cole’s great grandfather was the late Chief John Speck of the Tlowitsis who was the father of the late Henry Speck Sr. He is also the great grandson of the late Harry Hanuse of Mamalalaka (Village Island) so Cole comes from a very strong cultural and artistic heritage.

Speck arrived on the Vancouver art scene after apprenticing with master carvers Beau Dick and Wayne Alfred. Speck has a tremendous love and respect for his culture and he aspires to keep old traditions alive and at the same time allow his contemporary style to emerge.

In 2010/11 Speck was honoured to be asked to assist in the making of the Pat Alfred Memorial pole with Beau Dick. In 2012 he was Selected by Rande Cook to apprentice with him on a totem pole that was put on display in Holland as part of a Northwest Coast exhibit in the fall of 2012. In 2013 he participated in the Bill Reid Gallery’s exhibition “RezErect” and in 2014 Speck took part in the Museum of Anthropology’s “Claiming Space.”



  • 2016
    – Divergent Convergence, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
  • 2014
    Art Toronto | International Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery Booth, Toronto ON
    – Inappropriate, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
    – Claiming Space, Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver BC
  • 2013
    – Story, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
    – RezErect: Native Erotica, Bill Reid Gallery, Vancouver BC