181115-01 Don Lelooska (1933-1996), Kwakiutl Sun Figure;
21" x 20"
late 20th century
“Chief Don Lelooska, (1933-1996) was well-known in the Pacific Northwest as a Native American artist and storyteller. Of “mixed-blood” Cherokee heritage, he was adopted as an adult by the prestigious Kwakiutl Sewid clan and had relationships with elders from a wide range of tribal backgrounds. Initially producing curio items for sale to tourists and regalia for Oregon Indians, he emerged in the late 1950s as one of a handful of artists who proved critical in the renaissance of Northwest Coast Indian art. He also developed into a supreme performer and educator, staging shows of dances, songs, and storytelling. During the peak years from the 1970s to the early 1990s, the family shows, with Lelooska as the centerpiece, attracted as many as 30,000 people annually.”