Carved Treasure Chest of Eagle and Owl Design by John MarstonCarved Treasure Chest of Eagle and Owl Design by John Marston
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Carved Treasure Chest of Eagle and Owl Design

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"With this design I want to convey the concept of blanket weaving and basketry as applied to carving. I want the the viewer to look at this bentwood box and sense the feeling of traditional baskets and blankets and to convey my heartfelt gratitude to my ancestors who once made these beautiful objects. Front of Box The eagle is symblic of the power and strength that women carry. The salmon represents the role that our women once played and still do in preparing the fish to be stored for winter stock . Cedar slats were the main frame of traditional baskets.The concave line that separates the two (images)represents this shape. The Box Ends This design is a blanket pattern representing spear heads. This serves as a link to the box front as this was one method used to catch fish. The Handles The box handles are made from three strips of yew wood which are steamed bent, laminated, wrapped with cedar root and finally fitted and glued into the box. I have chosen yew wood for its strength and also because of its use as medicine for curing colds and other conditions. These days it is also used in western medicine to treat ovarian cancer. The cedar root is the main material used in Salish basketry and it further ties the box to the basket theme. The Back The owl represents wisdom and knowledge, I have been told that as a woman grows older the owl becomes her spirit helper." -- John Marston

Artwork Information

Location Canada
Region Northwest Coast
Artist John Marston
NWC Nation N/A
Date Created 2004
Dimensions 13.5" x 17.5" x 11.5"
Materials & Edition yellow & red cedar, abalone, paint, sheep's wool

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