Bill Reid silver cuff bracelet
One of the highlights of our upcoming Canadian and Contemporary Art/Northwest Coast and Inuit Art auction is this Bill Reid silver cuff bracelet. Created in 1979 for his friend Bill Ellis, founder of Canadian Native Prints. The bracelet depicts Eagle holding Salmon with a Bearded Man (Bill Ellis) peering over his head with two additional figures (Bill Reid) hidden amongst Eagle’s tailfeathers.
The imagery depicted on this bracelet relates to an experience the two Bill’s had one day as they were cruising in Haida Gwaii. As told by Bill Ellis….”We were cruising near Slatechuk Creek in Skidegate Inlet in my boat Singlejack when Bill noticed an eagle struggling on the beach with a bright salmon in its talons. “Supper!”, he cried, [We had been unable to catch a fish on our own.] I quickly dropped the anchor and launched the dinghy, Bill, eager to accept the eagle’s gift, forgot to put on his boots, which he regretted when we hit the barnacled beach. Eagle flew off to a high tree and glared down at us as we cleaned his catch, leaving him the head, tail, and guts. Then we went across the bay to a sunny beach where we swam, had some beer, and collected alder for our fire. Bill roasted Skaagii the Salmon as his Haida forbears had done for countless centuries at that place.”
This bracelet has been exhibited at the Bill Reid Gallery and is featured in Martine Reid’s book “Bill Reid Collected” on page 110. It is offered for sale in the upcoming auction with an estimate of $30,000 to $50,000