Hummingbird Noble Woman Mask by Janice Morin and Randy Stiglitz, Coast Salish
Mask depicting Hummingbird Noble Woman Janice Morin and Randy Stiglitz, Coast Salish red cedar, cedar bark, abalone inlay and earrings, human hair 27" with hair x 12" wide x 6.5" deep
To the Indigenous cultures of the Pacific Coast, the hummingbird is a female crest symbol and a messenger of joy. It stands for intelligence, beauty, devotion, and love. These little birds are also respected as fierce fighters and defenders of their territory.
Hummingbirds are a symbol of good luck. Seeing a hummingbird before a major event, such as a hunting trip, or travelling to another village, was considered a good sign.
There are stories that high ranking women would arrive at feasts with live hummingbirds tied to their hair, underlining and signifying their beauty, prestige, and close relationship with the spirit of the bird. This mask pays homage to this legend.
Coast Salish Nation artist Randy Stiglitz was born in 1953 in Lesquiti Island, British Columbia. Randy’s family moved to the Capilano Indian Reserve at the age of eight and he began carving at the age of 15 under the guidance of local artists.
Randy credits the late master carver and hereditary chief Henry Hunt Sr. as being the single biggest influence in his unique carving style. Randy has now been carving for over 40 years and is a highly regarded artist, and master carver in his own right.
Randy continues to explore the carving traditions of the Salish, Kwakwaka’wakw and Tlingit cultures in tandem with his wife Janice Morin, who is herself a highly accomplished Coast Salish artist.His work emphasizes technique and detail, rather than specific cultural styles, and is most of all noted for his personal style seen in each piece he creates.