Current Location:
Eberhard Center -> 2nd Floor (EC)
Location Notes:
EC; 2nd fl., Right of main stairwell

Traditional Basket

Artwork
Identifier:
2001.004.1
Artist:
Marge M. Bekins
Credit:
GVSU Collection
Medium:
Black Ash
Date:
2001
Dimensions:
Artworks - Height: 21 in Width: 17 in Depth: 17 in
Description:
Large-hand woven basket made of black ash. Blonde color.
Historical Context:
Marge Berkins, a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, studied black ash basket making under Charles Shedawin, who learned the art from his late wife. Black ash holds great significance due to its role in the legend of black ash basket making. According to the story, Black Elk was a man who recieved a vision from the Creator. He was told that when he died, a tree would grow out of the ashes from his cremated body. From this tree, his people could prepare strips to create baskets, teaching them patience and also giving them a way to provide for their families through selling and trading the baskets. This sacred art, along with its story, has been passed along from generation to generation.