Four new works carved by acclaimed First Nations artist Reg Davidson have gone on display at Vancouver International Airport, recounting Haida myths of creation and mischief.
A 24-foot carved cedar pole entitled Raven Stealing the Beaver Lake illustrates Raven stealing a lake, fish trap and house from the Beaver people and teaching the Haida people how to use the fish trap and build a house.
Alternately, a pair of sculptures, Blind Halibut Fisherman and Raven with a Broken Beak, tells of Raven trying to steal the bait from an old fisherman's hook, only to shamefully suffer a broken break.
"Art is an important part of how we create a unique sense of place at YVR that represents the cultural heritage, natural beauty and iconic experiences that embody British Columbia," said Anne Murray, vice president of marketing and communications at YVR.
"We are so proud to showcase Reg Davidson's stunning cedar works and highlight First Nations culture to the millions of passengers who travel through YVR every year."
Raven steals the moon
Davidson also carved a bentwood box for the collection, traditionally used to store precious objects, in reference to a creation myth in which Raven steals the moon out of a great Chief's bentwood box and gifts it to the Haida people.
"Thanks to YVR's amazing display of artwork, visitors from around the world are able to experience a first-class vision of aboriginal cultures, histories and traditions," said Davidson.
"I thank YVR for providing a unique opportunity for visitors to learn more about British Columbia, home to one third of all First Nations in Canada."
Davidson, of Masset, Haida Gwaii, B.C., is known for his sculptures, silk-screen prints, gold and silver jewelry, weaving, carved masks and painted drums and has exhibited all over the world since he began carving in 1972.
In Haida culture, Raven is believed to be responsible for creating the islands of Haida Gwaii and is often seen as a reflection of its people and their many different human qualities.