Bill Holm's Northwest Coast Indian Art: An Analysis of Form

It’s been 50 years since art historian and former Burke Museum curator of Northwest Coast Indian art, Bill Holm, published his influential book, Northwest Coast Indian Art: Analysis of Form.

Collector's Edition

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Bill Holm’s definitive book on northern Northwest Coast art, the Bill Holm Center and University of Washington Press published an updated color edition of Northwest Coast Indian Art: An Analysis of Form with a new preface by the author and contributions by contemporary Northwest Coast artists.

Last year we produced 200 copies of a limited hardcover collector’s edition of the book and fewer than 70 are left! Each numbered book costs $200*, features artwork unique to the collector's edition and has been signed by Bill Holm.


3d book cover reading "northwest coast indian art"

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In the 1950s, Bill Holm, a graduate student of Dr. Erna Gunther, former director of the Burke Museum, began a systematic study of northern Northwest Coast art. In 1965, after studying hundreds of bentwood boxes and chests, he published Northwest Coast Indian Art: An Analysis of Form, a foundational reference on northern Northwest Coast Native Art. 

Through his careful studies, Holm described this visual language using terminology that has become part of the established vocabulary that allows us to talk about works like these and understand changes in style both through time and among individual artists’ styles. Since its publication in 1965, more than 100,000 copies of Northwest Coast Indian Art: Analysis of Form have sold.