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Lesson Plans

Re: totem poles

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Clair/Lily Kerns (CWKerns)
Wed, 15 Oct 1997 10:24:55 -0500

>>>> But using plastic buckets, or paper
bags somehow doesn't acknowledge the importance of the use and
understanding of wood by the northwest coast peoples. Theys used every
part of the cedar tree: roots, inner bark, twigs and trunk. From the cedar
and other trees came house planks used for huge communal houses, posts
often 100 feet in length, large and small canoes, storage boxes that held
food supplies (made from steamed planks with fitted bottoms and lids, sewn
with bark thread), tool handles, clothing, baskets, mats and hats. These
peoples were not only incredible carvers, they were painters,their
exquisite designs found on many of the above item. Only this kind of
contact with a medium wood provide an opportunity for such full sculpture
as seen in totem carvings.

True. On the other hand, they were using what was plentiful/available in
their culture to make meaningful items. Would using wood be as meaningful
to us? Can we somehow give meaning to what is available and familiar to
us? Can their meaning be "translated" into a medium and/or form more
familiar to us?

Just a thought....


Lily Kerns CWKerns
Art Teachers--