2depressed2getdressed

vernissage

In art, festive, indian, native american, party, rituals, totem, totem poles, traditional, tribe on March 1, 2009 at 11:46 am

(…) At various significant occations, a chief would commission a carver to create a pole that featured his clan’s crest. When the pole was complete, other families were invited to witness it being erected at a ceremony called a potlatch. There was feasting and dancing, and stories were told. The hosts gave away elaborate gifts, often competing with other chiefs to see who could give away the most wealth. It was common for a chief to give away everything he owned at a potlatch, even in some occasions giving away the very clothes he was wearing.

Clearly potlatches weren’t just a celebration of a new piece of art. By attending the installation of a new pole, the other families were giving their assent to its use. Their presence was a way of saying “Yes, we agree that this crest belongs to these people.” As such, the poles and the potlatches played an important role in perserving the identity of each community.

source: Carve your own totempole – Hill, McKee and McMullen

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: