May 30, 1946
Opitsat, Meares Island, BC
In 1966, Joe attended art school in San Marcos, Texas, and in Seattle, Washington. He worked as a commercial artist until 1969 when he decided to return to Native art. Joe apprenticed with Dwane Pasco and Frank Charlie, and has also worked with Ron Hamilton and Russel Spatz. He assisted Bill Reid with the totem pole for Skidegate Council Chambers House, and attended Bill Holm’s classes at the University of Washington on Native art. Joe carved a totem pole for Expo 1974 in Spokane, Washington. He was also commissioned to carve two large welcome figures for Expo '86 in Vancouver. These welcome figures are now located in the international arrival lounge at the Vancouver International Airport. Joe has had exhibits at the BC Provincial Museum, Museum of Anthropology, and The Legacy Gallery. In 2005, Joe was featured in the Changing Hands: Art without Reservation 2 exhibit at the Museum of Art and Design in New York. He has recently started creating unique Nuu-chah-nulth jewellery, which was featured in a 2005 art exhibition in Seatle titled Engraved in Tradition. He is one of the most collected and celebrated artists working today.