Argillite Killer Whale (Orca) Pendant by Amy Edgars (Haida)

 Material: Argillite, paua shell, sterling silver

Dimensions: 51 mm x 38 mm (2 inches x 1.5 inches)

Chain option: 3mm wide sterling silver black ruthenium square rolo chain. 

Design:

  • "Killer whales are powerful creatures and represent family. The way they stay together and take care of one another is amazing." - Haida artist, Amy Edgars
  • "A crest belonging to many different Haida Clans. Killer whale is a powerful being that lives in the Ocean realm is apart of many Haida stories." - Haida artist, Raven Thorgeirson.
  • This design features a “Sgaana”, also known as orca or killer whale, which is a symbol of community, family & intelligence. Orcas travel the ocean realms in groups, further cementing their symbolism of community and togetherness. 
  • It is believed that the killer whale people have an analogous society to humans under the ocean, and there is where the first totem poles & longhouses originated.
  • In Haida mythology, there are many stories involving the underworld. One such story is called boy riding killer whale, which depicts a man who has to jump on the back of a killer whale to rescue his wife from the underworld. 

Made by Haida Artist, Amy Edgars: 

Amy Edgars is a Haida artist from Old Massett, British Columbia. She was inspired by her late father, Myles Edgars, to pursue the art of argillite carving. Amy began carving at the age of 16. "I saw my dad and others carving every day, so I thought I better sit down and try it out," says Amy. She also notes the late Haida artist Pat Wesley as an influence in developing her carving skills.

Amy is one of few Haida women argillite carvers and has been carving for over 15 years. She has a passion for carving and has made the trip up Slatechuck Mountain several times to gather her own argillite. 

About Argillite: 

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. 

Made by hand, please expect some variation in each piece.