Thunderbird Paddle by Laurence Scow, Kwakwaka'wakw
Thunderbird Paddle by Laurence Scow, Kwakwaka'wakw yellow cedar, pigment 59" long x 6" wide x .75" deep
Laurence Scow was born in 1958 into the Kwakwaka’wakw Nation of Fort Rupert, British Columbia. The Scow family, known as "The People of the Bear," are Kwikwasut'inuxw clan from the village of Gwa'yasdams on Gilford Island. Through heredity, the Bear and Sisiutl (double headed sea serpent) are family crests. Lawrence comes from a line of Kwakwaka'wakw carvers living in the Alert Bay and Gilford Island areas of Northern Vancouver Island. His Great Grandfather was renowned master carver and keeper of tradition Mungo Martin.
Though he grew up around carvers, including his brothers Rupert and Barry, Laurence did not start carving until later in life. Laurence specializes exclusively in traditional paddle making, a unique artform not all Kwakwaka’wakw carvers can master. The only designs Laurence uses are the clan and crest symbols he inherited through his family's lineage and from potlatching.