Artwork copyright James Jordan. Photo courtesy of the artist.
Artwork copyright James Jordan. Photo courtesy of the Washington State Department of Transportation.
Killer Whale, 1982
(American | Cherokee | Comanche, born 1945)
Location: Department of Transportation Ferry: Issaquah, Seattle
ABOUT THE ARTWORK
Artist James Jordan created Killer Whale for the MV Issaquah, a Washington State Ferry. Many elements of the artwork are based on traditions from the Indigenous Northwest Coast peoples. The painted whale figure is based on traditional curved and ovoid formline designs. The cedar boards were hand-carved with an adze, in the style of Northwest Coast carvings. Jordan notes that the artwork's subject matter is from Northwest Coast oral history: "the legend of Gunahr whose wife was kidnapped and taken to the undersea kingdom. In this design, Gunahr is portrayed riding to her rescue on the back of a killer whale…note his face in the dorsal fin and his hand holding on to the side of the whale as it dives."
This artwork was acquired for the State Art Collection in partnership with Department of Transportation.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Oregon-based artist James Jordan creates distinctive and original artworks influenced by the artistic traditions of the Northwest Coastal tribes. He was born in Longview, Southwestern Washington, and attended Lower Columbia College (in Longview) before graduating from the American School of Photography. Of Cherokee and Comanche heritage, he considers himself a student of the art and traditions of the Northwest Coast. He states that he "prefers not to copy but to create" a distinctive style of his own.
|Medium||Carved and painted cedar panel|
|Dimensions||3 ft x 4 ft|
|Acquisition Method||Site responsive commission|
|Artist Location||Oregon, United States|