The Sun also Sets (After Charlie James)
This painting is based on a traditional Sun mask, by my great-grandfather, Charlie James. Once used in potlatch ceremonies in the early 1920’s, this piece was confiscated by the Canadian government under the Anti-potlatch Law. At that time, singing, dancing, making speeches or even owning potlatch masks was illegal; several Kwakiutl traditional people were sent for jail for these offenses. The law has since been repealed; the mask repatriated to first nation, and is now in the collection of the U’Mista Cultural Centre.
Charlie James is a huge influence on contemporary Northwest coast Native art, although most of his carvings, many of which are in public collections, have never been attributed to the artist. I have studied his work for many years, and this painting is just one of the pieces that I have done as a homage to a great Kwakiutl master carver.
Oil on canvas
80 x 100 CM
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