Chief's Headdress depicting Thunderbird and Killer Whale by Patrick Hunt, Kwakwaka'wakw
Chief's Headdress depicting Thunderbird and Killer Whale, 1997 by Patrick Hunt, Kwakwaka'wakw First Nation yellow cedar, cedar bark, pigment 20” high x 14” wide x 14” deep
This headdress honors the Thunderbird and Killer Whale crests of the Hunt Family. Only Chief lineage families have the right to paint, carve, or wear these crests. It is said that the first Long House (or Big House) of the Kwakwaka'wakw at Alert Bay, British Columbia was painted with the design of Thunderbird and Killer Whale on the house front. Today, the Kwakwaka'wakw house front at Campbell River, British Columbia depicts this powerful and important pair.
Patrick Huntwas born in Victoria in 1966. He is the youngest son of hereditary chief, George Hunt and Mary Hunt. He is the grandson of Tom and Emma Hunt and May and Sam Henderson. The Hunt family was highly involved with the creation of Thunderbird Park for the Royal British Columbia in Victoria and created the first formal training programs for new artists. He was always involved with Kwakwaka'wakw culture and started learning the legends, rights, songs, dances and privileges from an early age as well as learning how to carve and design.
Patrick assisted with the carving and designing of the new Big Houses in Campbell River and Alert Bay. He carves in the family style which is distinct to the village of Fort Rupert—a coastal village on Northern Vancouver Island. He carves often with his uncle, Bill Henderson and his brother, Tom Hunt. He has also been involved with commissions and carving projects overseen by Calvin Hunt, Tony Hunt, Tom Hunt, Beau Dick and John Livingston. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions of the Hunt and Henderson families.
Patrick has always been a fisherman as well as an artist. He carves a few select pieces each year and he is a valued carver on monumental projects.