Friday grew up with revered Lummi weaver Fran James (1924-2013) as one of his Aunties, and he honors the Salish craft of cedar bark weaving with his series of blown mosaic baskets. He silvers the glass to give it a nacreous luminescence, changing the color of the glass as it is seen in different light and against different colors. Mimicking the wide, open weaving style of Coast Salish cedar bark baskets, Friday translates his Auntie’s legacy to a new medium and a new audience.
Dan Friday’s great-grandfather was Joseph R. Hillaire (Kwul-kwul’t), a famed Lummi totem pole carver. Among Hillaire’s most renowned commissions were two totem poles carved for the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair. One pole traveled around the USA to publicize the upcoming Fair; and one was created for Seattle’s sister-city of Kobe, Japan. Hillaire’s totem poles were a magnificent expression of the Lummi people’s relationship to the natural world and its inhabitants. Friday pays tribute to his great-grandfather’s carvings with his glass totems.
Friday utilizes the medium of blown and hot-sculpted glass to show reverence for his Lummi Nation heritage, and to honor specific Lummi artists who paved the way. (Statements courtesy of Stonington Gallery)