Vaillancourt's beautiful Rabaska (Canot du Nord) on Left; Algonkian style on right
Paddling the Algonkian style
The merry crew paddling away
Large Avant's (Bowman's) paddle
Large Gouvernail (steersman) paddle
The paddle has carvings on both sides of the handle and paddle. One side has the year 1936 carved on the handle and a salmon motif surrounded by floral designs on the paddle. The other side has a floral design on the handle and the letters BC surrounded by floral designs on the paddle. The carvings look like scrimshaw with the etchings filled with ink to stand out. The handle has a 20 cm cord tied around it.
The Paddle was used to paddle British royalty in 1936 in New Westminster. It is also part of a larger collection of objects honouring Maggie Pointe, sister of Shane Pointe and Gina Grant. On February 1, 2003, it was used for a memorial potlatch at Musqueam to honour the life of Maggie Pointe and was then given away, as is the custom, to the UBC Museum of Anthropology. On March 18, 2003 it was featured in the exhibit "To Wash Away the Tears," a collaboration between Shane, Gina, MOA and the students of the Critical Curatorial Studies MA program.
This auction is for is a One of a kind Hand Carved Algonquin style CANOE PADDLE. This is for the one paddle shown in the gallery picture. I hand carved this paddle using traditional hand tools from a single piece of beautiful North American Black Cherry wood. This paddle has stunning sculptural form and brilliant wood grain pattern. I based this on examples of traditional Abanaki, Passamoquoddy, Maliceet paddles (the same native Americans who built the spectacular and technologically advanced birch bark canoes). I have always admired the amazing and beautiful sculptural form in the original native American paddles made from various American hardwoods including birdseye and tiger maple, cherry and ash. Many were decorated with incised designs, I prefer the pure shape and highly figured wood. The last photograph (#5) shows other paddles I have made from a variety of different wood species and grain pattern (these are not part of this auction but shown for comparison and variety).
Most notable about these paddles is the selection of wood species for greatest strength and durability. The structural integrity, (they are thin and light where possible and thicker where needed) the shape of the grip and shaft, it is thickest where the greatest forces are during stroke. These are taken to a very fine finish and two coats of polyurethane finish applied.
This paddle offered in this auction is 66" long, blade is 6-1/4" wide (as thin as 3/16"in places) shaft is 1- 1/4" thick at widest point and weighs approx 28 ounces. Signed "SK" (Steve Kovach) with my personal brand on end of grip. There are some very fine and shallow surface drying cracks in the one side of this paddle from drying process (this is carved from an air dried board that was in my shop for the past 6 years) they are in the surface only and have no effect on the strength of this paddle They have been filled with cyanoacrylate glue prior to finish.
This will make a spectacular decorative piece but is also a fully functional as a deep water paddle for your birch bark canoe