GEORGE CLUTESI: ḥašaḥʔap / ʔaapḥii / ʕc̓ik / ḥaaʔaksuqƛ / ʔiiḥmisʔap

Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art presents the Vancouver premiere of the retrospective exhibition GEORGE CLUTESI: ḥašaḥʔap / ʔaapḥii / ʕc̓ik  / ḥaaʔaksuqƛ / ʔiiḥmisʔap from January 20, 2024 – January 19, 2025.

The exhibition is an exploration of the life and legacy of Clutesi, whose actions have left an indelible mark on the preservation and celebration of the Nuu-chah-nulth community’s cultural traditions and customs.

Featuring an extensive collection of Clutesi’s artworks, the exhibition further honours his legacy through striking displays of archival photographs and news clippings of his varied achievements, a documentary film about his long-lasting impact, and a curated selection of artworks from contemporary Nuu-chah-nulth artists and scholars, inspired by Clutesi’s activism and scholarship. 

Two Figures, George Clutesi

George Clutesi, Two Figures, 1959. Watercolour on paper, 22x19 in.

 “Like Bill Reid, who also lived and worked in the mid 20th century, George Clutesi was a huge inspiration for the next generation of Nuu-chah-nulth artists and scholars,” says Bill Reid Gallery curator Aliya Boubard. “While they had very different life experiences and approaches to their art forms, these artists helped raise awareness both inside and outside of their communities. George has been instrumental in not only educating others about his community’s cultural traditions, but preserving the sacred stories, dances, and masks that are practiced and celebrated today.” 

George Clutesi, Whaling Canoe, n.d. Pen and ink on paper.

George Clutesi, Whaling Canoe, n.d. Pen and ink on paper.

The name of the exhibition, written in the Tseshaht language, honours Clutesi’s many celebrated traits: ḥašaḥʔap (keep, protective) / ʔaapḥii (generous) / ʕac̓ik (talented) / ḥaaʔaksuqƛ (strong willed) / ʔiiḥmisʔap (treasure). A series of ancillary events will support the exhibition, including an opening celebration on Saturday, January 20, 2024, an artist panel discussion, workshops, a curatorial tour, and a book club event.

George Clutesi, Mask of Plenty, 1944. Watercolour on card, 17.5 x 12 in.

George Clutesi

George Clutesi, 1950. MOA 2005-001-393c

Visit Us

We are located at 639 Hornby Street (between Georgia Street and Dunsmuir Street) in Downtown Vancouver. We are a little hard to find as our entrance is in a courtyard. Look for the sandwich board on Hornby Street and climb the short stairway. 

A wheelchair accessible path is also located between Christ Church Cathedral and Cathedral Place on Georgia Street. This takes you through the courtyard and to the Gallery entrance.

Purchase your tickets in advance and enjoy the exhibition (on view from January 20, 2024 – January 19, 2025). Explore more of our website to check our full list of events and registration details.


Prominent Nuu-chah-nulth artist George Clutesi has a career retrospective exhibit at the Bill Reid Gallery
The Vancouver Sun

Bill Reid Gallery celebrates the life and legacy of George Clutesi with a comprehensive retrospective
The Georgia Straight

Exhibition showcases remarkable life of George Clutesi, who safeguarded Nuu-chah-nulth culture

George Clutesi: ḥašaḥʔap / ʔaapḥii / ʕc̓ik / ḥaaʔaksuqƛ / ʔiiḥmisʔap at the Bill Reid Gallery

Bill Reid Gallery Celebrates Artist George Clutesi in a Year-Long Premiere Exhibition
On the List

Exhibit celebrating Nuu-chah-nulth renaissance man to open at Vancouver gallery WindSpeaker

Exhibition Partners

Visual Stories Lab Curatorial Collective: Andrea Naomi Walsh, Jennifer Claire Robinson, India Rael Young, and Raey Lee Costain (Department of Anthropology, University of Victoria). 

Exhibition Supporters