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The Seattle Sketcher

An illustrated journal of life in the Puget Sound region by Times artist Gabriel Campanario.

June 1, 2010 at 4:34 PM

This whale makes an impression at the Burke Museum

burkewhale052810m.jpg
May 28, 11:24 a.m. [Click sketch to view larger]
photo.jpgLast Friday, after visiting the exhibit Cruisin’ the Fossil Freeway at the Burke Museum, I tweeted my sketch of this monument and Andrew Zahler recognized the location right away.
Zahler, 30, grew up in Seattle and now lives in Spokane. He said the image triggered vivid memories off playing around the monument as a kid. “When I was between 5 and 6 I went to a small kindergarten in Capitol Hill and I know I was there on a field trip,” said Zahler, who last visited the museum in 1994.
I can see how the Native American poles and monuments outside the Burke would leave a big impression on a 5-year-old. But even as an adult, I’m also captivated by their beauty and symbolism.
“Single Fin” is a replica of a grave monument in Howkan, Alaska. The original was commissioned around 1880 by Moses Koohl-Keet as a memorial to his uncle, head of Brown Bear House, a branch of the Haida tribe.
You can learn more about other poles and monuments outside the Burke Museum during a free presentation this evening –sorry for the short notice!– or visiting the museum’s website.

Comments | More in Museums

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