The Garden of My Life

Submitted by: Beverly Anger

Materials: Red boiled wool, quilting cotton, interfacing, size 11 charlotte seed beads, swarowski crystals, plant material.

Iroquois raised beadwork on boiled wool. This is the garden of my life. The raised beadwork represents my Onandaga heritage. Isolation has given me the opportunity to reflect on the meaning of my family and their importance in my life. The hummingbirds have always been a part of my life, the protectors. These two represent my husband and myself. The flowers at the top of the mask are our 4 daughters, the vine of flowers on the left are our 8 grandchildren and the gold bead beside it our first great-granddaughter. The forget-me-nots on the right are my parents already gone to the Spirit. The big pink flower petals are my 4 sisters and myself; the centre my three brothers. The twisted rope is what brings us all together. The back of the mask is a cardinal in birch trees. One of my sisters has been quite ill through the last few weeks, this cardinal is all of our ancestors watching over her and she is on the mend. Sewn between the two layers are the 4 sacred medicines, tobacco, cedar, sage and sweetgrass. This has brought me so many lessons, so much comfort and I have learned so much about myself

This mask was created for the Breathe community Facebook group – A collection of traditionally crafted masks demonstrating resiliency through 21st century pandemic.