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Sisiutl 'Box of Treasures'

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  • Edition Size:
  • 150 signed and numbered, 15 artist's proofs
  • Paper Size:
  • 46 x 46 cm, 18 x 18 inches
  • Publication Year:
  • 2000

The Sisiutl is a mythical creature found in many First Nations cultures of the Pacific Northwest. It is featured prominently in Northwest Coast dances, songs, and art. The Sisiutl symbolizes contradiction and duality. It can make warriors powerful and invincible, but it can also turn anyone to stone with its glance.

The Sisiutl is usually depicted as a double headed serpent with a human like face in the centre of its body. The two ends of the snake extend out from the sides, or curl around to form a circle. The head in the middle and the two heads on each side have horn-like appendages, similar to Thunderbird. In the Pacific Northwest, horns such as these typically indicate a supernatural being.

In this design, Peter Dawson gave the Sisiutl a circular design, with the Box of Treasures filling the centre space. The Box of Treasures does not contain materialistic items, but knowledge of the land, sea and forests.

This limited edition silk screen print titled "Sisiutl 'Box of Treasures'" by Peter Dawson was hand produced by the screen printing process. It is the only limited edition printing of this design. The artist has inspected and signed each copy in the edition. All trial copies of this edition have been destroyed and the printing stencils obliterated.