Please click on each photo - expands to full size views of the entire stick you will be able to see the entire front and back of the stick - more of the designs as well
This talking stick shows off some of the best work by Joe Hugga Dana, Penobscot chip carver. Under the carved chief's head at the front top of the stick is a small carved turtle. Most of Hugga's talking sticks have either a carved face or a carved turtle on the top of the stick. On this one you have both! (this is only the 2nd talking stick with carved chief's head/ turtle thatI have been able to offer)
As is traditional, he leaves the bark on some of the top of the stick. The chief wears a true Wabanaki chief's headdress, with feathers standing straight up, encircling the entire head. The feathers are beautifully carved and detailed. Just above the band holding the feathers are chip carved long ovals - the smaller downy feather "bunch" that would be in front of the large, generally eagle feathers. The band holding the feathers has chip carved triangles and a starburst design at center.... this headdress band would have had the designs beaded Under the chief's face is a necklace with long oval dangles. Under the necklace is the small carved turtle - with it's accurate 13 scutes on it's shell. On either side of the turtle is a chip carved ash branch. ((Significance of ash branches explained below)
Below the band of bark that is beneath the carved turtle is a traditional triangle, with incised diamonds, chip carved triangles with long chip carved oval dangles - feathers or leaves? Below this is a beautiful round starburst design of chip carved triangles.
On the bottom front of this talking stick are 2 ash branches arising from an incised double curve - traditional Penobscot design, yet done in Hugga's very current style, almost Greek key like. There are chip carved diamonds/triangle designs at center of the double curve. The triangle/diamond is a very old design used in a variety of ways in early chip carvings. e
On the back at bottom is a single ash branch of Hugga's above that is a morning star design (made with chip carved triangles) and above that, below the bark is Hugga's signature, his initials "JD" over a lightning bolt with his signature stylized double curve motifs on either side of it. At back top is the back of the chief's head and headdress. Hugga has taken something traditional and made it quite current and very much his own.
This stick is 16" long and 1.5 " in diameter at top and 1.25" diameter on bottom. You will receive information on talking sticks with this piece.
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 the Penobscot creation myth... they were made by the creator's arrow piercing the brown ash tree and the splinters became the people. Please check out all and click to expand to full size all the pics in the slide show to see several traditional designs around this stick.