Crests

To appreciate the Art, it is important to understand the structures of their social system. All Haida are born either “Ravens” or “Eagles”. The determination of moiety is established by the mother’s affiliation. Within the moiety are lineages; associations to these lineages are several crests, legends and Haida names. The legends associated with the Art may not be known, as it originates in the artist mind. It is of great […]

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Symbols of Art

The Ravens and Eagles owns and have a right to display certain crests. A sample of the crests affiliated with the Ravens are: Raven, Killer whale, Grizzly bear, Black bear, Hawk, Moon, Sea Wolf, Shark and Wolf. A sample of crests affiliated with the Eagles are: Eagle, Beaver, Sea Wolf, Hawk, Killer whale, Raven, Frog and Dragonfly. Brief descriptions of the most commonly utilized crests: Birds such as the “Raven” […]

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Totem Poles

Bill Reid totem pole

Totem poles represented family lineages and privileges; they told the story of the people that lived in the houses. Chiefs competed with other chiefs with having taller and more detailed totem poles. Carvers were in great demand to create these rich works of Art. There are different types of totem poles, each with a different function: Mortuary poles were used for high-ranking individuals or chiefs. These poles had large cavities […]

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Argillite

Norman Price argillite totem

A rare stone called Argillite known as black slate can be found in the Charlottes, and is only visited by the Haida for it’s use. It is a known fact that this is a Haida resource and everyone respects that. This dull grey stone transforms into a beautiful black shiny Art form when it is carved. This brilliant material was and is still used to carve free forms and miniature […]

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Button Blankets

Button-blankets were made from heavy wool and shell buttons which made it difficult to perform ceremonial dance. Blankets trimmed with mother of pearle or shell buttons were for the rich or high-ranking individuals. The manufacture and use of new material such as lightweight wool have made it easier to sew the blankets, and have given more freedom to dancers. The use of modern materials enables the artist to make fabric […]

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