Art Collection

 Artist Information

Accession # 2000.212.01

Artist: Carl Beam

Title: Traffic

Date of artwork:

Object Type: Print


Height: 91

Width: 55

Location: Otonabee College

Description: Print of raven and traffic light in dusty pink and maroon. Framed with a single white mat, silver metal frame, glazed.

Artist Biographical Info: Carl Beam

Date of Birth: May 24th, 1943

West Bay, Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Canada

Residence: M'Chigeeng, Manitoulin Island

First Nations Affiliation: Ojibwe

Education: 1971 Kootenay School of Art, B.C.

1974 B.F.A. University of Victoria, B.C.

  • Graduate Studies, University of Alberta

    1980 Anasazi Pottery Techniques in New Mexico

    Artists C.V.:



    • ART GALLERY OF GETTYSBURG COLLEGE, Pennsylvania. The Columbus Suite.
    • THE ART GALLERY OF SOUTHWESTERN MANITOBA, Brandon, Manitoba. The Columbus Boat.
    • LONDON REGIONAL ART GALLERY AND HISTORICAL MUSEUM, London, Ontario, Adobe Project: Living in Mother Earth.


    • ART GALLERY OF ONTARIO, Toronto, Ontario. The Columbus Suite.
    • TWO RIVERS GALLERY, Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Columbus Boat.
    • THE WEIL GALLERY, Corpus Christi State University, Texas. The Columbus Boat.
    • THE POWER PLANT, Toronto, Ontario. The Columbus Boat.
    • THE SKYDOME, Toronto, Ontario. Colours of Humanity.


    • THE ARTISAN GALLERY, Richards Landing, St. Joseph's Island, Ontario.
    • THE POWER PLANT, Toronto, Ontario. Re-enactment - Between Self and Other.



    • BURNABY ART GALLERY, B.C. Cultural Imprints: Contemporary Works by Seven First Nations Artists.
    • AGNES ETHERINGTON ART CENTRE, Queen's University, Kingston. Notification.
    • THE MCLAUGHLIN GALLERY, Oshawa, Ontario. Environmental Canada Project.
    • CANADIAN CULTURAL CENTRE, Paris, France. Transitions.


    • ART GALLERY OF ONTARIO, Toronto, Ontario. Oh! Canada.


    • BRANDTS KLAEDERFABRIK, Odense, Denmark. Indian Time.


    • NICKEL ARTS MUSEUM, Calgary, Alberta. Land, Spirit, Power.
    • HAMILTON ART GALLERY, Hamilton, Ontario. Reading the Language of Culture.
    • CONTEMPORARY ARTS MUSEUM, Houston, Texas. Land, Spirit, Power.


    • INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM - Native American Art Association Panel Member. Santa Fe, New Mexico. Burying the Ruler.
    • NEWTON ART CENTRE, Newtonville, Massachusetts. Fragile Power: Explorations of Memory.
    • MACKENZIE ART GALLERY, Regina, Saskatchewan. Land, Spirit, Power.
    • RENEE FOTHOUI FINE ART EAST, Long Island, New York. Indian Territories.
    • WINNIPEG ART GALLERY, Winnipeg, Manitoba. Indigena.
    • THE YORK QUAY GALLERY. Earth, Spirit and Power - Within the Shadow of the Sun.


    • NATIONAL GALLERY OF CANADA, Ottawa, Ontario. Land, Spirit, Power.
    • CANADIAN MUSEUM OF CIVILIZATION, Hull, Quebec. Indigena.


     Description of the art work / Artist Statement

     Relevance to Canadian Art

    Many of Beam's works feature animals that are of great importance to the Ojibway culture. The raven, important in most Native cultures, is symbolic in Beam's work. The raven represents "a powerful trickster, able to transform at will and yet, as capable of massive blunders as he is of glorious exploits" (Trevelyn) Beam incorporates the Native definitions for animals and contrasts them against Western views.

     Other Collections

    Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario
    Canadian Museum of Civilization, Hull, Québec
    The City of Buffalo, New York
    The City of Revelstoke, British Columbia
    The City of Sudbury, Ontario
    Gallery 480, Elora, Ontario
    Government of Ontario Art Collection, Sudbury, Ontario
    Heard Museum, Phoenix, Arizona
    Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
    Laurentian University, Museum and Arts Centre, Sudbury, Ontario
    McMichael Canadian Collection, Kleinburg, Ontario
    National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
    New College, University of Toronto, Ontario
    Ojibwa Cultural Foundation, West Bay, Ontario
    Thunder Bay Art Gallery, Ontario

    Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario
    Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario
    Woodland Cultural Centre, Brantford, Ontario


    Kelley, Caffyn. "Broken silence, visible wounds: Canadian artists expose social space with contradictions intact." High Performance 18, nos. 1-2 (Spring-Summer 1995): 48-53.

    Canadian Museum of Civilization, ed. In the Shadow of the Sun: Perspectives on Contemporary Native Art. Hull, Québec: The Museum, 1993.

    Cinader, Bernhard. "Carl Beam: 20th-century Woodland artist." Art Post 8, no. 2 (Winter 1990/1991): 20-23.

    "The Columbus suite." Globe & Mail Metro Edition, 5 February 1993, p. C2. [Review: Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto]

    Fischer, Barbara. Re-enactment: Between Self and Other. Toronto, Ontario: The Power Plant, 1990.

    Grande, John K. "Carl Beam: Dissolving time." Canadian Forum 72, no. 820 (June 1993): 19-23.

    Kritzwiser, Kay. "Viewpoint; 29 x 9." Arts Magazine (February / March 1981): 10-15.

    "Living in mother earth." Canadian Art 10, no. 3 (1993): 90. [Review: London Regional Art & Historical Museums. London]

    "Look Ma, no mortgage." Toronto Star, 23 July 1992, p. G4. [Review: Gottlieb Gallery]

    McMaster, Gerald, and Lee-Ann Martin, eds. INDIGENA: Contemporary Native Perspectives. Vancouver, British Columbia: Douglas & McIntyre, 1992.

    Moodie, Jim. "Adobe house: How artists Ann and Carl Beam built a beautiful adobe country home in northern Ontario." Harrowsmith Country Life 21, no. 131 (December 1996): 32-41.

    Nemiroff, Diane. LAND, SPIRT, POWER: First nations at the National Gallery of Canada. Ottawa: Canadian Catalogue in publication data,

    "Paintings from the Columbus Boat." Border Crossings 12, no. 3 (Summer 1993): 48. [Review. Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba, Brandon]

    Rhodes, Richard. Carl Beam, the Columbus Boat. Toronto, Ontario: The Power Plant, 1992.

    Southcott, Mary E. The Sound of Drum: The Sacred Art of the Anishnabec. Erin, Ontario: Boston Mills Press, 1984.

    Tétrault, Pierre-Léon, Dana Alan Williams, Guy Sioui Durand, Alfred Young Man, et al. New Territories: 350/500 Years After: An Exhibition of Contemporary Aboriginal Art of Canada. Prefaces by Robert Houle, Tom Hill. Montréal, Québec: Ateliers Vision planétaire, 1992.

    Trevelyn, Amelia. Seeing a New World: The Works of Carl Beam and Frederic Remington. Gettysburg, Philadelphia: Gettysburg College of Art, 1993.



    Carleton University

    Deleon White Gallery


    First Nations Art

    Peterborough Arts Umbrella