This item is apart of our Gallery 3 Exhibition, Sqātsza7 Tmicw – Father Land.
Totem The Power and The Glory by Ed NoiseCat, Shuswap and Lil’wat Nation,
The place where thunder sits is the perfect metaphor for Ed NoiseCat’s homecoming exhibition, and this piece pays homage to this territory where Thunderbird watched over the people as he roosted on Black Tusk Mountain. In this piece, Thunderbird is sitting on top of a lightning bolt high up in the sky, a piece of reverence.
Ed “This story is the inspiration behind ‘The Power and the Glory” -For Lil’wat, Black Tusk Mountain is called Q’elqámtensa ti Skenknápa, a place where the thunder rests. In a village along a river called Qwalimak lived the Mosquitoes (spirit warriors) and a little ways away lived Sílas (Thunder). One day, when the weather was hot, the Mosquito Chief sent his warriors to the earth in search of food. The Mosquitoes encountered people and learned that drinking the people’s blood satisfied their hunger. They immediately flew back home to tell their Chief. “Fill up the cedar root coiled basket and get some hot rocks from the fire,” they were told. Thunder heard that his neighbors were living the high life, and asked the first Mosquito, “Where did you find this blood that you folks eat?” The Mosquito wanted to keep the source a secret and mislead Thunder. He replied, “We suck it from the tree tops.” So Thunder shot at the trees with a bolt of lightning. No blood came out, only a little bit of smoke. Thunder then approached the second Mosquito and asked, “Where did you get this blood that you boil in your baskets?” “We suck it from the rocks and stones.” Thunder let out a big lightning bold but, still no blood. This is why Mosquitoes still feast on human blood and why Thunder strikes trees, rocks and stones with its lightning bolts.
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