August 19, 2021

Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas Joins TrépanierBaer Gallery

TrépanierBaer Gallery is pleased to announce representation of world-renown and award-winning artist and author Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas.

Over the past four decades, Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas has produced numerous bodies of work inspired by Haida iconography, and re-presented them for contemporary audiences. Initially focused on paper-based narratives, Yahgulanaas’s visual practice encompasses a variety of different art forms including large-scale public art projects, sculpture, painting,  works on paper, ceramics, and graphic novels.

In the late 1990s, after studying Chinese brush techniques, Yahgulanaas consciously began to merge Haida and Asian artistic influences into his self-taught practice, and innovated the aesthetic called “Haida Manga,” that crosses cultures and disciplines.

Haida Manga blends North Pacific Indigenous iconographies and framelines with the graphic dynamism of Asian manga. Notable publications include the national bestsellers RED, a Haida Manga (2009) and Flight of the Hummingbird (2008). The Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver recently acquired the original mural RED, a Haida Manga, inspired by the book of the same title – for its permanent collection. Flight of the Hummingbird served as inspiration for an opera co-produced and commissioned by Vancouver Opera and Pacific Opera Victoria, and is slated to be performed in 2022.

In 2007, Yahgulanaas inaugurated his Coppers from the Hood series at the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver. These sculptures are made from the hoods of cars, in homage to the Haida coppers that are traditionally exchanged during potlatches. Today, more than a dozen sculptures from this series are held in public and private collections around the globe – the most notable being Yelthadaas (2010) at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City and Copper from the Hood, (2011) at the British Museum, London.

Upcoming projects include:


  • Release of Mischief Making: Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas, Art and the Seriousness of Play, 2021, UBC Press by Nicola Levell, forward by Nobohiro Kishigami, for Fall of 2021.
  • Major commission from a European museum for 8 square metre mural mixed paper on washi paper. This commission will be accompanied by an 108 page book. Both are scheduled for presentation in 2022/2023.
  • Yahgulanaas is currently working on a large-scale outdoor public art sculpture that will be completed in 2023.
  • An exhibition of Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas’s work is planned for TrépanierBaer in the near future.

Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas was b
orn in Prince Rupert, British Columbia in 1954 and grew up alongside Delkatla, near the fishing village off Masset on Haida Gwaii, off the north coast of British Columbia. He is a descendant of the iconic artists Isabella Edenshaw and Charles Edenshaw, and Delores Churchill. He lives and works in Vancouver, British Columbia. His work has been seen in public spaces, museums, galleries and private collections across the globe. Institutional collections include the British Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Seattle Art Museum and Vancouver Art Gallery, to name a few. Solo exhibitions of note include: Carpe Fin, Seattle Art Museum (2019/20); Seriousness of Play, Bill Reid Museum, Vancouver (2015); Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas and Edward Burtynsky, Glenbow Museum, Calgary (2009).  Group exhibitions of note include: SDING K’AWXANGS–HAIDA: SUPERNATURAL STORIES, McCord Museum, Montréal (2019);  Indigenous Beauty,Seattle Art Museum (2015); Beat Nation, Vancouver Art Gallery (2012). and Extraordinary Stories from the British Museum, Western Australian Museum, Perth, Australia (2012), to name a few.

Image Credit: 
Sinking Into the Ocean,
Collage, paint, ink on wood / 76 x 61 cm / Recto
Private Collection / Photo: Tobyn Ross