Fort Dent Park
An early work by a celebrated Indigenous sculptor honors the power of the eagle.
Once a winter village for the Duwamish tribe, Fort Dent Park in Tukwila was partially vacated in the aftermath of the 1855 Point Elliott treaty before briefly becoming the site of a small military blockhouse. The 54-acre location was then used as farmland until it was developed into a public park in 1968.The park is home to Eagle, an early work by renowned Northwest Coast artist Marvin Oliver symbolizing strength and connection to the Creator. A carved and painted cedar head and beak protrude from a rectilinear panel mounted on two posts high above the ground below. The sculpture was restored in 2012 and again in 2020.
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Oliver (1946–2019) was a renowned carver, sculptor, and printmaker. Born in Shelton, WA, with Quinault and Isleta-Pueblo heritage, he worked within Northwest Coast traditions and themes, often focusing on Native American stories about time, ancestors, and the future. His works can be seen in public spaces across Washington state and the United States, as well as in Canada, Japan, and Italy. Several major pieces are installed at the University of Washington’s Seattle campus, where he was a student and longtime professor. Other 4Culture commissions include Spirit of Our Youth at the Judge Patricia H. Clark Children and Family Justice Center.