SMALL TREASURES PREVIEW: Northwestern Tribal Art by Jane Hansjergen

I recently took a trip to Seattle where I visited a museum highlighting Northwest Tribal Art.  I was especially interested in the carved wooden plaques, symbolically depicting animals.  The vibrant colors and stylized incised designs and motifs were spectacular.  I was inspired by this stylized method of depicting animals and gave it my own twist.  I have chosen to represent each family in the Animal Kingdom: Mammals, Birds, Reptiles, Amphibians and Fish.  Each animal’s body is carved in a stylized manner, while the heads are more realistic.  I attempted to capture the essence of each animal’s form and expression. 

Frog: First roll the slab of clay, and carve out the bottom layer of the body shape. 

Frog: First roll the slab of clay, and carve out the bottom layer of the body shape. 

Add layers.

Add layers.

Carve out the body pattern details and add the realistic head.  Cut around the body shape in the bottom slab. 

Carve out the body pattern details and add the realistic head.  Cut around the body shape in the bottom slab. 

Salmon

Salmon

Raven

Raven

Sea Turtle

Sea Turtle

Fox

Fox

Add the colors to the body patterns.  First add white.

Add the colors to the body patterns.  First add white.

Then add Black.

Then add Black.

Red is always last.

Red is always last.

Paint the details on the head.

Paint the details on the head.

Paint the background slab.

Paint the background slab.

Prep the boards.

Prep the boards.

The finished series.  Northwest Animal Kingdom!