Bird mask of the Tsimshian people, used in initiation ceremonies. Artist unknown; 19th century. Collected in Nisga’a territory at the mouth of the Nass River, British Columbia, Canada; now in the Louvre.
This set includes post earrings, ring, bracelet and necklace and is based upon the spread tail of an eagle and it’s claws. The Necklace is made from overlaid, pierced and carved silver with a carved bison horn centerpiece. The ‘claws’ were made to mimic actual eagle claws and are hand cut and carved from bison bone as are the black beads on this piece. The post earrings have a center bison horn carving with two carved eagle feathers in silver. The ring repeats this motif with the band carved into a feather.
Naas shagi yeil s'aaxw (Raven at the Headwaters of Nass hat) from the Tlingit people of the Pacific Northwest. Carved from maple; decorated with paint, shells, hair, and baleen. Artist unknown; ca. 1810. Now in the Seattle Art Museum. Photo credit: Joe Mabel.