Availability: Only 1 available
18K White Gold, Cast, Engraved
Only 1 available
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- Additional Information
- Artist Bio
18K White Gold, Cast, Engraved
Gwaai Edenshaw (Hluugiitgaa) is an Eagle from the Ts’aalth clan. He was born in 1977 to Jenny Nelson, an author and teacher, and Guujaaw, a drummer, carver and former president of the Council for the Haida Nation.
Gwaai, as a baby, hung from a pole in Skidegate in his Jolly Jumper while his father carved. Since then, his experience in creating art has ranged from comic book drawing, to totem pole carving, to creating gold, silver and argillite jewelry.
The late Bill Reid began mentoring and training him in the traditional forms of Haida art when Gwaai was sixteen. At the age of nineteen, Gwaai worked on his first totem pole under his father, Guujaaw. It was a forty-footer, which now stands in Indonesia. Since then, he has worked on three additional poles with his father.
In 2002, Gwaai assisted Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas with his graphic novel, “A Tale of Two Shamans.” This experience nurtured a penchant for more experimental themes in Haida art.
As a graduate of Vancouver Community College, Gwaai studied Jewelry Art and Design. Casting was of particular interest to him and remains his preferred medium to this day. His works boast a refined and delicate design, complemented with Abalone shell embellishment. His miniature scale jewelry pieces are delicate and intricate, exemplifying his attention to detail.
In the last few years, Gwaai has branched out to film and co-directed on ‘Edge of the Knife’ – the first feature film to tell a story about the Haida people set in the 19th century and performed entirely in the Haida language. It premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival in September.
Gwaai is also one of the founding members of the Q’altsi’da Kaa players, who are currently engaged in their inaugural project, “Sounding Gambling Sticks,” a play to be performed entirely in the Haida language. He currently lives on Vancouver Island.
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Argillite, Catlinite, Abalone shell, Sterling silver
The Frog symbolizes luck, prosperity, stability and healing. As a communicator, Frogs connect with the world on land and under water. This figure is often carved into totem poles to prevent them from falling over.
Argillite, Abalone Shell, Sterling Silver, Mastodon ivory
The Hawk takes its place in the supernatural spiritual world, inspiring unique designs for masks, rattles and jewelry. For the Haida Nation, it was used to represent the Thunderbird. Often associated with the Sun, the Hawk can be distinguished by its curled beak which curves to meet the tip of the lower jaw.
When the Raven brought light to the world, some versions of the legend say that it was the Hawk who made the Raven drop the box so it opened, releasing the Sun, Moon and Stars into the Universe.
For more details on shipping Ivory outside of Canada, please click here and then click open the Shipping section and scroll down to read more on Shipping Restrictions.
Other works by this artist
“Red Sky at Night” Finish
The “SINX” design is indicative of Haida gambling sticks. The Haida had several gambling games, one high-stakes game notably involved the use of elaborately decorated sticks. Versions of the sticks can be found in museums and collections worldwide.
Sterling silver, Copper (Artist’s Signature Seal), Impressed
Part of Gwaai’s Regalia jewelry line, featuring handmade works that depict abstraction of the Haida form. The motifs impressed on each piece are borrowed from a dismantled a bentwood box design featuring variations of the Raven story. As an extension of this original concept, Gwaai has developed other themes such as reinterpreting Naxiin or Chilkat blanket weaving designs. After embossing on sterling silver or copper sheets, each specific design is carefully chosen for its aesthetic and narrative qualities. They are then shaped and polished by hand, ensuring no two pieces will ever be identical.