Sunday, February 22, 2009

February 22, 2009

This past Friday the staff of Ganondagan spent the day at the Tonawanda reservation. I was there to teach a class on cornhusk twined salt bottles. We were hosted by Jamie Jacobs and Ken Poodry in the firehouse building. We had a former ELDERS gathering attendee there as well as a good group of dedicated craftsmen/women.

The husks we brought came from our earlier work with Norton Rickard (Tuscarora) and his amazing Iroquois White Corn Farm. After braiding a couple dozen long ropes of corn I made sure we kept the remaining great long husks for such projects. It is essential to dry them well and store them away from rodents. The use of corn "by-products" fits so well into the cycle of Haudenosaunee lifeways and our intrest in cultural preservation. This year it seems we are ontrack for such activities.

The skill level required to make a simple twined cornhusk bottle is high. It is not for everyone. Twining is an ancient method of weaving which can be used to make husk moccasins, mats, bottles, bowls, & baskets. This workshop would introduce the concept of twining and hopefully get some Haudenosaunee artists using the techniques and materials.

At the close of the class two students had achieved containers and others were on their way to finishing the project! I was amazed at how quickly some people caught onto the concepts. It is good to see.

As the snows began to fall we decided to leave before it got worse and headed back to Ganondagan. We left behind a huge bag of cornhusks and hopefully the knowledge to work them.

Oneh ki,

Michael Galban

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"Si Wong Geh" On-line

We are pleased to be able to offer back issues of the Friends of Ganondagan's quarterly newsletter, Si Wong Geh, to our on-line friends:

The on-line issues will lag beyond the current issue by 3 months. If you would like to receive the current issue of Si Wong Geh, please consider becoming a member of the Friends of Ganondagan. You can learn more about the membership benefits and how to become a member at our Membership page.

Please help support the Friends of Ganondagan with your membership - it is through the support of our membership that the newsletter and our programming is possible!

May this message find you well and dreaming of melting snows and spring!