Rande Cook (Kwakwaka’wakw)


TRAVEL-A-Lot-I-C series


The Supper Club
(Rande Cook, Carollyne Yardley, and Noah Becker)

Rande Cook in his studio with Idle No More
Rande Cook in his studio with Idle No More

Rande Cook (Kwakwaka’wakw) is a multimedia artist who was born in culture-rich Alert Bay surrounded by the beauty of land and art. He found the passion of artistic creativity at an early age. With the strong teachings of his grandparents Cook learned the values of life and culture that prepared him for his Chieftainship.

Traveling the world has given this small-town boy a broader perspective, and coupled with his strong roots, bolstered his desire artistically to push the boundaries of traditional works, as evidenced recently during the popular exhibition, Ravens in a Material World, at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

While growing up, Cook observed and discussed the traditional art forms of his Kwakwaka’wakw forefathers with his grandfather. He was especially drawn to the ceremonial masks and art of the potlatch. With the strong teachings from his grandparents about culture and the sacred ceremonies of the Potlatch world Cook became an accomplished singer and dancer in these ceremonies.

Cook is a strong leader for his people and carries two chieftainships, the Hamatam/Seagull and  Gigalgam from the ancient ancestor Kwanusila/Thunderbird. This story can be seen on the 27-foot totem pole he was commissioned to carve for the Museum Volkenkunde in the Netherlands in 2012.

In 1991, Cook moved from his tiny island life to Victoria to attend high school. There and throughout college he was exposed to a wider range of art-forms and practices. His natural curiosity and desire to be creative lead Cook to take as many classes and read as many books as possible about Western Art History. This coupled with the artistic nurturing provided to him by master carver John Livingston lead Cook to a unique perspective of the art he creates. He continually pushes the boundaries by using his accumulation of knowledge, heritage and experiences to create provocative and beautiful works that challenge the viewer to think.

Rande Cook held the 2015 and 2016 Audain Professorship of Contemporary Art Practise of the Pacific Northwest with the Visual Arts department at the University of Victoria.

Sacred art, sacred teachings – by John Threlfall


  • 2014
    – “Shaman Pole” private commission
  • 2012
    – “Quench” 8 ft. totem water fountain for the city of Duncans’ 100 year centennial
    – 26-foot totem pole commission for the Museum Volkenkunde in Leiden, The Netherlands
    – Rande Cook collaborated with film maker Broderick Fox for his film “The Skin I’m In” at the Victoria Film Festival
  • 2009
    – First Peoples House at UVIC; House Post panels
  • 2006-07
    – Private commission 28′ totem, multiple interior installations including two 8′ x 8′ carved sliding doors.


  • 2015
    – Behind the Gold Veil, Campbell River Art Gallery, Campbell River BC
  • 2012
    – Exhibition in collaboration with Victoria Film Festival screening of “The Skin I’m In”,  Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
    – The Spirit Within, Steinbrueck Gallery, Seattle, WA
  • 2011
    – Continued Explorations of the Form line, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
    – Convergence/Divergence – Landscape and Identity on the West Coast, The Legacy Gallery, University of Victoria, Victoria BC
  • 2010
    – Innovative Visions of the Form Line, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
  • 2007
    Arctic Raven Gallery, Friday Harbour WA


  • 2018
    – Papier | Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery Booth, Montreal QC
  • 2017
    – Art Toronto | International Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery Booth, Toronto ON
    – Shapeshifting: Rande Cook and Carollyne Yardley, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
  • 2016
    – Divergent Convergence, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
    Art Toronto | International Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery Booth, Toronto ON
  • 2014
    Art Toronto | International Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery Booth, Toronto ON
    – White Before Labour Day, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
    – Inappropriate, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
  • 2013
    – Urban Thunderbirds/Ravens in a Material World, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
  • 2010
    – Giving Traditions, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
  • 2009
    – Group exhibition, Steinbrueck Gallery, Seattle WA
  • 2008
    – Inspired Reflections, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
  • 2007
    – Gathered Treasures, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
    – Group exhibition, Douglas Reynolds Gallery, Vancouver BC
  • 2006
    – Opening/Exhibit, National Museum of the American Indian, Washington DC
    – Group Exhibition, Douglas Reynolds Gallery, Vancouver BC
  • 2004
    – Canada Council Art Bank, Washington DC
    – Story Tellers, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
  • 2003
    – Group exhibition, Smithsonian Museum, Washington DC

– Tribal Miniatures X, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC


  • 2017
    Audain Professor for the Pacific Northwest at Universit of Victoria


  • 2017
    — Audain Achievement Award for BC
  • 2012
    – City of Duncan Perpetual Art Award for Quench
  • 1995
    – Graduated from Victoria High School with the Henry Hunt and Mungo Martin Art Award


  • 2010
    – Studied Repousser and Chasing, Italy and New York
  • 2007
    – Studied Under Robert Davidson, Repousser and Engraving
  • 2005
    – Studied Traditional Box Bending with Bruce Alfred
  • 2000/2006
    – Apprenticed under Master carver John Livingston, Art Thompson
  • 2001
    – New Zealand Art Exchange, Canoe carving
  • 1997/2000
    – Apprenticed under William Cook for Silversmith and Engraving