HOOVER, Allan L.




Author Tags: Anthropology, Art, First Nations, Haida Gwaii

Comprised of fine mineral clay and carbon, argillite is a black shale that is exclusively mined from a quarry near Skidegate on the Queen Charlotte Islands. Reserved for the use of Haida carvers, argillite is soft enough to be carved with ordinary woodworking tools. The first recorded trade of Haida argillite occurred in 1774 when the Spanish exploration led by Juan Pérez received a small argillite pipe off the shores of Langara Island. The B.C. Provincial Museum acquired and developed a 225-piece sculpture gallery of argillite carvings, the largest such collection in the world, in the late 1970s. About half the pieces were donated by Francis and Kay Reif of Vancouver who had purchased 90 of the 111 pieces in their possession from abroad. This museum collection includes small totems created by Haida carver Charles Edenshaw and elaborate panels that depict some of the activities of Europeans in the 19th century.

The Magic Leaves: A History of Haida Argillite Carving (1984, 2002) was co-authored by Allan L. Hoover, former Manager of Anthropology at the Royal B.C. Museum, and Peter Macnair, a Curator Emeritus in Anthropology at the Royal B.C. Museum. It features more than 200 photographs of argillite carvings from the Museum to chronicle the history of the art form since it began in the early 1800s. Hoover also contributed an article to Bill Reid and Beyond (2004) and edited Nuu-chah-nulth Voices, Histories, Objects & Journeys (Royal B.C. Museum, 2000).

Hoover's first work The Legacy: Continuing Traditions of Canadian Northwest Coast Indian Art (1980), co-authored with Keven Neary, was reissued as The Legacy: Tradition and Innovation in Northwest Coast Indian Art (1984), with Peter L. Macnair. It features photographs of works by 39 artists from a exhibit that toured Canada and the United Kingdom in in the 1970s and early 1980s. It has been reprinted a dozen times.

Allan Hoover, who lives in Victoria, is one of five co-authors of Tsimshian Treasures: The Remarkable Journey of the Dundas Collection (D&M $55), a book catalogue about the collection of 80 Tsimshian ceremonial objects that were bought from missionary William Duncan by Reverend Robert J. Dundas of Scotland in October of 1863. More than a century later, this so-called Dundas Collection was auctioned in New York for the Dundas family for total sales of more than $7 million.

BOOKS:

The Legacy: Continuing Traditions of Canadian Northwest Coast Indian Art (BC Provincial Museum, 1980). With Peter L. Macnair (senior author) and Kevin Neary. Republished as The Legacy: Tradition and Innovation in Northwest Coast Indian Art. (Royal BC Museum, D&M, University of Washington Press, 1984; 2007).

Nuu-chah-nulth Voices, Histories, Objects and Journeys (Royal British Columbia Museum, 2000)

The Magic Leaves: A History of Haida Argillite Carving (Royal B.C. Museum, 2002, $39.95) by Peter Macnair & Alan Hoover. 0-7726-4773-9

Tsimshian Treasures: The Remarkable Journey of the Dundas Collection (D&M 2007). 978-1-55365-332-5

[BCBW 2007] "Art" "Anthropology" "QCI" "First Nations" "Indianology"

Tsimshian Treasures: The Remarkable Journey of the Dundas Collection
Article



Victoria’s Allan Hoover is one of five co-authors of Tsimshian Treasures: The Remarkable Journey of the Dundas Collection (D&M $55), about the 80 Tsimshian ceremonial objects bought from missionary William Duncan by Reverend Robert J. Dundas of Scotland in 1863. This so-called Dundas Collection was recently auctioned in New York for the Dundas family, reaping more than $7 million.

978-1-55365-332-5

[BCBW 2008] "Art"