We often get questions about how to care for jewelry whether it be silver, gold, copper, or argillite. It’s important to stay informed about the type of metal or stone you are wearing in order to preserve and care for it properly. Since Haida-carved silver jewelry is particularly popular for its look and craftsmanship, we thought we’d start with that first.Read More
As people are looking to experience Haida Gwaii and learn more about Haida culture, we regularly receive questions about Haida art and how to go about purchasing a piece, whether that be jewelry, a carving, or sometimes even a 50 ft pole. (Yes people do go shopping for Haida carved poles. How do you fit that in your suitcase??)Read More
Take a look back into the Crystal Cabin archives! We hope you enjoy as we explore the work of the many Haida carvers and artists who we’ve had the pleasure to know over the years, such as: Christian White, Gitsxaa (Ron Wilson), Alfie Collinson, Ding Hutchingson, Vernon White, Carmen Goertzen, Ron Russ, Chris Russ, Myles Edgars, Mike Brown, Marcel Russ, Garner Moody, Leon Ridley, Robert Vogstad, Clayton Gladstone, Gregory Williams, Steve Hansen, Norman Bentley, Derek White, George Yeltatzie and many more! For over 30 years Crystal Cabin has been a hub of Haida jewelry and fine arts, and we want to share our collection with you!Read More
Argillite is unique to Haida Gwaii as it is found only on one mountain known as Slatechuck Mountain. The journey to the argillite deposit is a treacherous hike, and is accessible only by the Haida people. It is recognizable by its black pigment and shiny exterior when carved. When unpolished, argillite is rough and matte.Read More
Michael John Brown was born in 1958 and comes from the Haida Eagle clan of Hydaburg, Alaska and Old Massett, Haida Gwaii. We were very sad to hear of his passing recently, and want to extend our deepest condolences to Mike’s family and friends. We will remember his inspiring words and beautiful works of art forever. Below are some photos of some of Mike’s pieces that Crystal Cabin has acquired and treasured over the years.
Michael grew up in Old Massett and started carving argillite at the young age of 16, using his grandfather’s handmade tools.
Sought after by several private art collectors and museums, Mike’s work has traveled all around the world and admired by many. The uniqueness of Mike’s work has been seen in his ability to transform a Haida story into his style while maintaining close values to traditional Haida formline.
Some museums have been so dazzled by his pieces due to his style that looks so similar to the ancient pieces from their collections. His carvings showcase beautiful lines of certainty and strength.
“My grandfather told me many stories while growing up and it’s important to share this history with others”
“I just didn’t want to lose the culture and heritage. Carving is a way to stay connected”
“You need to feel the energy of the stone. It’s a cool feeling. Without this energy, it’s not as motivating to carve.”
“Practice makes perfect, don’t be afraid to keep on trying."
“If we don’t keep carving, we’re going to lose it...”