PLEASE Click on each image and it will expand to show full length or more detail of this talking stick.
A carved brave's head is atop this talking stick by Erik Sappier, Penobscot/Abenaki carver. Chief's heads, brave's heads and turtles are the traditional carvings atop Wabanaki talking sticks. This elegantly detailed talking stick also features a small flower on the side and two star designs on the front center. Erik Sappier's work is included in a recent Abbe Museum's exhibit.... "Emergence: Root Clubs of the Penobscot Nation". For more about Erik see the bio section on this website.
Erik uses traditional designs with several variations on a traditional style chip carved talking stick, most are design elements that have been used by Erik's ancestors for centuries. Like most talking sticks and root clubs, some of the bark has been left on the top of this stick. Erik has used a dark stain on the bottom of the stick which provides sharp crisp contrast to the carving he has done.
It is 14" long and about 1.25" in diameter
This talking stick has at top - the carved brave's head with 2 carved feathers in his hair. There is incised star between the feathers and another one above the right side of his head (your left as you look at it.) he is wearing a traditional fully feathered headdress - feathers upright all around the head. His hair is long on either side of his face. Just below his face is an incised double curve design with incised ovals at bottom left and right and at center is a triangular design atop which sits 3 chip carved elongated ovals (leaves).
Below the bark at front is a band triangle designs that are chip carved and incised, beneath this band is band of deeply incised vertical "stripes" - both bands completely encircle the stick. Below the bands on the front is an arrow shaft - which has deeply chip carved triangle design at the center. At the top are 2 chip carved triangle designs on either side of these is a star design. THere are incised oval leaves dangling from the sides of the sticks. at top corners - a short chip carved ash branch is on one corner, wrapping around to the side, on the other corner is a star- also wrapping around to the side. At the bottom corners are chip carved ash branches dangling downwards. At very center bottom of the arrow shaft is chip carved trifoliate design. On the back, below the encircling bands which are beneath the bark is Erik's signature - His initials, EJS with the J below the E and the S looking like a lightning bolt.
The chip carved leafed branches you see on this stick are similar in Senahbeh, Stan Neptune, Joe Hugga Dana and Erik Sappier's work. These branches and leaves were a subject of conversation between Hugga and Erik recently. They say it is a brown ash which is a sacred tree to the Northeast Native Americans - it figures in their creation myth... they were made by an arrow piercing the brown ash tree and the splinters became the people.