36" x 24"
Painted by Dale Faulstich
Dean has been interested in Northwest Native American art design and techniques for many years. His respect for the skill and knowledge of the west coast tribes' artists prompted him to try his hand at this unique and historic art form.
What is a Northwest Coast copper?
The tlakwa or copper is a symbol of surplus wealth, cultural nourishment, conspicuous consumption and spiritual power among the Kwakiutl, the Tsimshian, the Tlingit, the Haida, and other indigenous peoples of coastal British Columbia. Names of high ranking people often contained references to copper, such as "Born to be Copper Maker Woman" and "Copper Maker." Copper was also used as a decorative motif on garments, staffs, and crest carvings, where it represented wealth. Copper was also considered to possess magical properties affecting human health.
The copper was made of a large flat sheet of beaten metal cut in the shape of a flared shield, with a T shaped ridge beaten onto the lower portion. The shape perhaps reflects the trunk proportions of the human body, or possibly a filleted salmon. The Tsimshian thought it represented the backbone of an ancestor. The size varied in height from six inches to two and a half feet.
read more about Coppers at the
Lane Community College Library website