Eagle and Salmon Spirit

About this object


Susan point noted in an interview with Art Curator Karen Duffek, in 1985, that: "this is one of the two designs I submitted to the North American Lawyers Convention [held in 1984]...They didn't select this one, they went with the other design I submitted. This is non-traditional, however, the style and motif of the Salish is still there; the forms like the v's, the wedges, and the crescents... The eagle is just an eagle - visual, reality. With all the spindle whorls I've seen, there's always the human face in there, so its incorporated into the body of the eagle to give it more of a Salish look, so to speak."

Cultural context

contemporary art; traditional motifs; guardian spirit complex

Iconographic meaning

Homer Barnett (1955) identifies the eagle as one of the animals that is associated with hunting. However, he also states that skill at fishing is associated with: "the spirit of any fish, including salmon, cod and halibut; also the spirits of some fishing birds and local mythical spirits (1955:148)." The combination of the bird and fish in this design would support the later interpretation.

Physical description

Silkscreen print of a bird carrying a salmon. The design is circular in shape with the top half in medium grey ink and the bottom half in light grey ink. A narrow black circle surrounds the design. The following is written in pencil underneath the image: 11/80 Coast Salish Design "Eagle and Salmon Spirit" Sept 1985 Susan A. Point.