Availability: Only 1 available
Bronze cast, Bronze mirror, Red Cedar Wood
Price available on request
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- Additional Information
- Artist Bio
Bronze cast, Bronze mirror, Red Cedar Wood
|Dimensions||36 x 36 x 2"|
|Nation||Coast Salish Nation|
Susan Point is a Musqueam First Nations artist. She was born in 1952 and lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Susan artistic career began in 1981 and she immersed herself in the study of traditional Coast Salish art, and emerged with a language of design, both authentic yet vibrantly contemporary.
As well as practicing traditional motifs, Susan also expresses her own personal style. Like many First Nations artists, she uses the meaning found in traditional art to create innovative work in a wide range of mediums. Susan initially began producing fine art in precious metals, serigraphs and acrylic paintings; however, she is now producing large scale public art in mediums which include glass, wood, stainless steel and concrete. Many of Susan’s works can currently be found in private and corporate collections in over twenty countries around the world.
From the Artist: “Coast Salish art is relatively unknown to most people today as it was an almost lost art form after European contact — the reason being is that Salish lands were the first to be settled by the Europeans which adversely affected my peoples’ traditional life-style.
Today, much of the native art associated with the Pacific Northwest Coast is from principle tribes of northern British Columbia. Because of this, over the years, I spent a great deal of my time, as a Coast Salish artist, trying to revive traditional Coast Salish art in an attempt to educate the public to the fact that there was, and still is, another art form indigenous to the central Pacific Northwest Coast.
Although most of my earlier work is very traditional, today I am experimenting with contemporary mediums and themes; however, I still incorporate my ancestral design elements into my work to conditioning as well as social and economic conditions.
In creating my art, I feel a need to continually express my cultural background and beliefs yet, at the same time, my work continues to evolve with changes within and outside of my community.”
2007 British Columbia Creative Achievement Award for First Nations’ Art
2016 British Columbia Lifetime Creative Achievement Award
2011 “Coast Salish Masterworks“, Coastal Peoples Gallery
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Argillite, Abalone shell, Mother of Pearl, Catlanite
This ornately detailed panel pipe inlayed with catlanite, abalone shell and mother of pearl tells the ancient story of Nanasimgit.
The man or Nanasimgit is depicted at the bottom of the pipe holding skils to represent his stature. It shows the numerous potlatches he has held. The following story is a shortened version as told by the artist, Christian White:
One day, the man’s wife was washing sea otter skins near the ocean, when a Killerwhale arose from the surface. It coaxed her into the water and carried her seaward while her husband watched in disbelief. Without hesitation, he quickly decided to follow them until the Killerwhale dove near a two-headed kelp, which prevented him from going any further. He was feeling quite distraught as he returned back to the village but by then he had decided to seek the help of his uncle, the Frog.
The Frog offered him advice on how he could get his wife back and suggested that he take specific objects with him for his journey. He brought spruce root twine, a gimlet and medicine, placing them in his canoe. But, before he embarked on his journey, he was urged to undergo a fast in order to cleanse his body, which involved various rituals.
Once the fast was completed, the man embarked on his quest until he came across the kelp he had encountered before. He tied his canoe to the kelp along with his possessions and climbed down beneath the surface to find himself in another world. He followed a path where he encountered three blind women that resembled Geese. He used his medicine to cure two of the women while the third one chose not to accept the medicine. The cured women vowed to repay him for his deed. As he proceeded onward, the man came across two slaves, from the Killerwhale clan, chopping wood. As they proceeded to chop the wood, the head of their axe fell off and they began to cry knowing the consequences they would face from the Chief. The man stopped to assist them and in return they directed him to his wife’s dwelling. The slaves warned the man of the watchmen pole that stood in front of the longhouse protecting the inhabitants. The watchmen had the ability to scent out and watch out for intruders.
While he proceeded further on his path and thought about how to divert the watchmen, the man encountered a Heron repairing a canoe without success. The man stopped to offer him his gimlet to successfully repair the canoe. In return for his generosity, the Heron helped conceal the man under his wing blanket from the Black Whale guards and the watchmen. He successfully entered the longhouse to happily find his wife. At this point, the watchmen discovered the man taking his wife back with him, but were unable to stop him.
When the man arrived back with his wife to his village he felt a different connection with her, as though she was not herself. At night, he would keep her in a bentwood box, but one morning when he awoke, to his surprise she escaped. She left to be with her Killerwhale family and fully transformed into a Killerwhale. This was the last he saw of her.