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Yellow Cedar wood, Acrylic paint
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- Additional Information
- Artist Bio
Yellow Cedar wood, Acrylic paint
|Dimensions||60 x 6 x 0.75"|
|Nation||Coast Salish Nation|
Coast Salish Nation
William Toby Jefferson was born on July 3rd, 1969. On his mother’s side, William is a descendant of Heyawek (Speakers) from his namesake’s Quiachtun and his father Latsean of Lummi/Thlaktemish. Both Quiachtun and Latesean are the 5th & 6th generation grandsons of Squilox, representing 10 generations of Thlaktemish on Orcas Island (200 years ago). Quiachtun married Celia, the daughter of the Heyawek named Chehanek and son of Joskanen of Semiahmoo. William’s mother is Tahweethlot Juanita Jefferson of Lummi and Dutch/Scottish Irish ancestry.
On his father’s side, William is the grandson of Heyawek Stateethlum (Chief Stateethlum) of S’klallam and Snuneymuxw (Chief Nanaimo) on Vancouver Island, and Sealth (Chief Seattle) of Suquamish/Duwamish. His father is Whipkanim David Jefferson of Lummi ancestry.
William was raised in the Longhouse under traditional teachings and stories. The earliest teachings handed down to him came from his cousin, Dale James, when he was only nine years old. James, a Lummi Master carver, advised William to “look into the wood, carve what you see and put your own style into it.” He told him that this approach was fundamentally Coast Salish and Lummi.
At the age of 12, William learned how to shape and carve canoes and paddles from his father. These lessons came long before William had ever considered himself a carver. He later learned teachings of canoe carving from his late Uncle Roy Edwards, of Stz’uminus First Nation, and from George Swanaset, of Nooksack Nation.
After befriending fellow artist Terrance Campbell at the age of 27, William was taught basic Formline design. It took him 3 years to transform his designs into his own unique style. This style is inspired by teachings, as well as from William’s spiritual experience with the animals, their spirits, and with “beings that no longer walk this earth.” His experiences with these things have sparked a desire to create art that flows continuously, connecting everything and everywhere.
“This is my connection to the spirit, my prayers to my ancestry, my Grandmothers, Grandfathers and our Creation.”
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Price upon request
Cattle Bone, Abalone shell, Cedar bark
Commonly used by a Shaman, soul catchers were used to cleanse human souls and spirits. If a person was sick, or perhaps possessed by a demon spirit, the soul catcher was used to coerce the evil spirit out of the body. The open ends were caped with cedar bark to hold the soul until it was cleansed and brought back from the spirit world. The healed soul of the recipient was then returned to the body by the Shaman by blowing through the soul catcher and into to the patient’s mouth.
The shape of the soul catcher is typically cut from animal bone in such a way that the ends are flared outward and the surface is carved with figures associated with the Shaman’s spirit guides. Spirit guides accompany the human spirit or soul on its transformative journey between worlds. The ends of the Soul Catcher were sealed to contain these spirits. They also protect the boundaries between the physical and spiritual world, keeping those involved in the healing ceremony safe from evil minded spirits and beings. The symmetrical arrangement of the figures essentially defines objects of this type and the figures tend to more sculptural in appearance.
Soul catchers are extremely powerful and respected healing instruments; because of this, they were often housed in special bentwood boxes to keep them safe.
Soul Catcher: 1.25 x 6.75 x 1.25″
Including Stand: 3.25 x 6.75 x 1.5″
Box: 5.75 x 8.75 x 5″