"It is my intention to break the barriers between Native art and the art of the world by fusing many ideas that will enrich the body of my art form. My hope is that by doing this we as a society can see the beauty in all cultures and embrace the spirit that connects us all in an ever embracing rainbow of colours." Rande Cook
Rande Cook (Kwakwaka’wakw) is a multimedia artist born in 1977, in culture-rich Alert Bay. Surrounded by the beauty of the land and art, he found the passion of artistic creativity at an early age. Cook has studied under several master craftsmen to learn traditional jewellery and carving techniques including master carver John Livingston. In 2015 and 2016, Rande Cook held the Audain Professorship of Contemporary Art Practice of the Pacific Northwest with the Visual Arts department at the University of Victoria.
While growing up, Cook observed and discussed the traditional art forms of his Kwakwaka’wakw forefathers with his grand- father, Gus Matilpi. With the strong teachings from his grandparents about culture and the sacred ceremonies of the Potlatch world, Cook became an accomplished singer and dancer, and learned the values of life and culture that prepared him to be a strong leader for his people. He carries two chieftainships: the Hamatam/Seagull; and the Gigalgam from the ancient ancestor Kwanusila/Thunderbird. This story can be seen on the 27-foot totem pole he was commissioned to carve for the Museum Volkenkunde in the Netherlands in 2012.
In 1991, Cook moved from his tiny island life to Victoria to attend high school and college. There he was exposed to a wide range of art-forms and practices from the Western tradition. Traveling the world has also contributed to his broadening his perspectives and bolstered his desire to push the boundaries of traditional works. More recently, in 2017, Cook was invited as an artist in residence at both Pilchucks Glass School and the Museum of Glass in Washington. Working with an experienced crew at both establishments took him to new heights exploring and challenging the delicacy of glass. Cook created beautiful pieces with First Nations elements and contemporary influences from glassware and figurative sculptures to glass pieces used in his wood works.
Today, Cook can be found creating art in his studio full time where he is currently preparing for his MFA in the fall. In addition he is passionate about his family and being involved in his community as a public figure. With his unique accumulation of heritage, knowledge and experience, the gentle rebel continually pushes boundaries to create beautiful and provocative works challenging audiences to reconsider the role of traditional techniques for contemporary art-making.
See RANDE COOK'S CV (curriculum vitae)
For more instant up dates on Rande Cook's current works, art and design, and modern art, please view RANDE COOK ART page on Facebook
You may also view some works posted by clients on Instagram under the following hashtags
A promotional video featuring Rande Cook with Lee Brooks, the owner of Arctic Raven Gallery.
Filmed in Alert Bay B.C., Eve River North Island B.C., and Leaf Modern Studio in Victoria B.C.
Film by Spartan Media Group.
Rande’s Upcoming Art Shows and Events
Douglas Reynolds Gallery
Arctic Raven Gallery
Spirits of the West Coast Art Gallery
Wei Wai Kum First Nations
If you are a Gallery interested in commisions or other works, please contact Rande at email@example.com