“When our people were whaling they prepared their whole lives spiritually to be worthy of a gift as generous as a whale. Everyone in the community had to work in unity to ensure the hunt was successful and done safely. Each whale was such a bountiful offering of food for the community and each part of the whale was utilized and celebrated. As a Tla-o-qui-aht woman there are many large gifts I am hoping to bring home to my community and I understand that I am on a journey to spiritually lay the groundwork so that I am ready when they arrive. Pook-mis, the drowned whaler, lies at the bottom of the sea floor and offers a warning that things can go horribly wrong if you are not properly prepared.
Becoming Worthy is a part of a series of woodblock prints exploring my people’s natural and supernatural relationship with whales.”
– Marika Swan
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