Material: Argillite, Mother of Pearl
Dimensions:4.75 inches tall by 2.5 inches long by 1.5 inches wide
Design: Blind Halibut Fisherman
This is a one-of-a-kind piece.
Argillite is a black stone that is geologically classified as slate. The argillite from Haida Gwaii is found on one mountaintop and is protected by the Haida Nation as a stone exclusively carved by the Haida people.
This stone’s geological formation makes it unique compared to argillite found elsewhere. Exposure to high heats allowed this argillite to cool and form in a way that was strong enough to be carved, yet soft enough to take on fine carving details and sculpting.
Once this stone was found by Haida artists its true transformation began.
About the Artist
The late Haida artist, Michael Brown was born in 1958 and comes from the Haida Eagle clan of Old Massett, Haida Gwaii and Hydaburg, Alaska. He grew up in Old Massett and started carving argillite at the young age of 16, using his grandfather’s handmade tools.
In Haida culture, the meanings of designs and symbols are in context of oral histories passed down through generations.
Some stories have been lost due to residential schooling and colonization, during which time the Haida were outlawed from practicing their language and culture. With the stories that remain, Haida elders continue to share these stories with the next generation.
Each design is created based on the artist’s unique style and their personal and familial interpretation of Haida stories.
So what’s the best way to choose a design? We encourage you to select the design that you feel most drawn to. Haida artists create these pieces to share their art and culture beyond Haida Gwaii. We hope you enjoy. Haawa (thank you).