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Explore the history, objects, meanings and techniques behind the art of the Coast Salish people native to the Pacific Northwest at http://www.burkemuseum.org/coastsalishart

Contemporary Art

Today, Coast Salish artists continue to use traditional tools and techniques, but are also using computer graphics, laser cutters, power tools, silk screen and giclée prints, glass hot shops, foundries and more to bring both traditional and innovative forms to the 21st century.

Coast Salish artists have been commissioned to produce large scale public art installations that are viewable throughout the region. These include house posts and welcome figures, story poles and cast bronze sculptures.


For additional examples, follow the links below:


Art Inspired by Traditional Forms

Coast Salish spindle whorls housed in museum collections were studied by Susan Point, Stan Greene, Charles Elliott and other Coast Salish artists who sought to revitalize Coast Salish art in the late 20th century, a time when most Northwest Coast artists were working in more northern styles. The circular form of the whorl has continued to inspire many 21st century Coast Salish print makers.

Spindle Whorl

Greene Print

Point Print


Spindle Whorl

Point Print


Spindle Whorl

Wells Print


Susan Point has also experimented with several designs inspired by a wooden comb in the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology.

Peabody Comb

Point Print “Squirrel”


Suquamish elder Ed Carriere was inspired to weave his “Mountain, Lightning and Icicle” basket after studying a Suquamish basket in the Burke Museum collection in 1992.

Suquamish Basket

Ed Carriere Basket