Sisiutl (Sea Serpent), red cedar art by Shane Baker

Sisiutl (Sea Serpent), red cedar art by Shane Baker

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Have a look at those incredible details. Shane truly put all his love for this art into this piece.

SISIUTL (Sea Serpent) by master artist Shane Flood Baker from the Coast Salish First Nation

Wonderful 21" circular red cedar. The painting is very clean, he polished it to give it a nice shine. The human like head of the sisiutl is seen on top while the double headed snakes are shown below, surrounding the moon - the rim shows whale symbols. The colors chosen add to the powerful expression. Fully hand crafted - meaning it's not perfectly round, but very close to ! The carving lines are just so clean and detailed - typical Shane - just think about all the hours and work Shane put into it.... 

Measurements: 21" in diameter, 1" thick (one minor natural flaw on lower left side, have a close look)

Meaning: The Sisiutl is a symbol for healing power and magic. It's closely associated with war and strength, he is known to be invulnerable and to provide protection from harm. The Sisiutl is one of the most powerful crests, and mythological creatures in the mythology of the Kwakwaka'wakw, Nuu-chah-nulth and various other Tribes and figures prominently in their art, dances and songs. Sisiutl is the god of warrior invincibility, a magic war-canoe that can go underground and guardian of the house of the sky people. Sisiutl are frequently depicted as a two headed sea serpent or snake with a human-like head in the middle of the body. All three heads are surmounted by "horns of power" The humanoid central head likely symbolizes Sisiutl’s supernatural shape-shifting powers Sisiutl could also change size from a few centimeters to a span sufficient to block off a bay. As a transformative creature of vast shamanic power, the Sisiutl could travel in and across all boundaries: land, water, & air. There is a belief among the Coast Salish that Sisiutl employ orca/killer whales for transportation. It is so powerful, that contact or even seeing one, was believed to cause sickness or death. According to legend, looking at the sisiutl can turn a person into stone. However, if one kills a Sisiutl, it has healing powers. Images or sculptures of Sisiutl were employed to guard canoes and cedar plank longhouses.Warriors traditionally wear the sisiutl's emblem for protection in battle. Thunderbirds are one of the few predators of Sisiutl

Photos of This Piece

About This Artist

Shane Flood Baker is a member of the Squamish Nation which consists of descendants of the Coast Salish Aboriginal peoples, originating from greater Vancouver area, Gibson’s landing and Squamish River watershed.  Born in the province...Artist bio and other available works »

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