Stormy Sky; basket by Sarah Sockbeson, Penobscot basketmaker has has both porcupine curls and round curlicue curls. The antler handle balances it perfectly. The colors are that of a storm coming; dark teal blue (sky), pewter gray (dark cloud), and natural ash (the white edges of the building clouds). Sarah said of an earlier basket that the rough edges of the antler handle which comes from the very bottom of the deer antler made it look like a cloud. And so it does here. The dark teal color is what a Penobscot elder once told me was the "angry sky" color and it meant the coming of a thunder storm.
This is 5.5" diameter top tapering to a 3" diameter on the bottom. It is 3.25" to the top of the basket, 3.5" to the top of the curls on the basket lid and the antler handle adds 1.25" making the overall height 4.5".
Woven of brown ash splints, traditional basketry material of the Wabanaki peoples (5 tribe confederacy; Abenaki, Maliseet,MicMac, Passamaquoddy and Penobscot). The rims of the basket and the lid are bound with tidal sweetgrass. There is a bit of sweetgrass used as weavers at the center of the lid (around the antler handle) then some very narrow teal weaver splints before and after a few rows of very very tightly and finely braided sweetgass weavers. Next is 4 rows of narrow pewter gray weavers , 2 rows of narrow dark teal weavers and then 3 rows of narrow natural ahs weavers - which form a very little used design called the "chain" or "chain link" design. Then alternating rows of a bit wider weavers, dark teal and pewter gray. At the outer edge of the lid is 2 rows of natural porcupine curls and 2 rows of pewter gray curlicue curls at the outer edge of the lid.
Sarah has used alternating wide teal and narrow pewter gray color ash splints for her foundation splints on the basket bottom weaving a culicue curl of pewter gray atop the narrow foundation splint of the samel color and a porcupine curl of natural ash atop the dark teal dyed foundation splint.
Basket is signed and dated on outer edge of inside of lid. Comes with the cards and a bit of loose sweetgrass that Sarah included; these are shown in 2nd to last of the photos.
Last photo is of Sarah - I hope to post her bio soon ... photo and more information about Sarah will move there when that is up! Sarah has won ribbons at the Santa Fe Indian Market and the Heard Museum Invitational show for her work. Her work was featured in the Portland Museum of Art's 2016 Bicentennial exhibit along with 3 other young Maine Indian basketmakers. Awards such as these elevate her work from finely crafted baskets to works of art.