Mat

About this object

History of use

The Salish Weavers Guild was inspired by the research of amateur anthropologist, Oliver Wells. Mr. Wells, a local farmer, spent much of his time interviewing his Sto:lo neighbours about their history and cultural traditions, while making collections of cultural objects - many of which are now in the Chilliwack Museum. During the 1960s, Wells became especially interested in Salish loom weaving, and with the assistance of Mary Peters of Seabird Island, helped to organise a local guild that operated out of the Coqualeetza Cultural Center between 1971-1985. Weavers worked together to dye and spin wool. They made weavings on commission, or brought their work in to fill orders as they were recieved.

Narrative

Sto:lo weavers suggest this textile was made from sheep's wool that was not washed first, as the wool still feels oily. This would date back to the early years of the Salish Weavers Guild when everything was done by hand. This type of wool is still used, but the Salish Weavers Guild no longer exists. The artist attribution is based on another small weaving that is nearly identical to this one, with a tag identifying it to be the work of Josephine Kelly (in the collection of the Coqueleetza Cultural Society).

Cultural context

weaving; contemporary

Physical description

Rectangular wall hanging coarsely woven with light yellow-brown wool around the border and light yellow-brown mixed with off-white fibre at the centre. There are tassels of a different wool woven into the bottom row. The same wool is woven across the top. Blue 'Salish Weaving' tag sewn to back.