Returning to Spirit: Chilkat and Ravenstail Weavings of the Northwest Coast

Tuesday, April 4, 2017
6:30 PM

Free and open to the public

An additional free lecture for the public will take place April 5th at 1:30pm at the Burke Museum! 

Burke Museum

Join Lily Hope and Ursala Hudson for an exploration of the call to serve as a lifetime weaver in the Chilkat and Ravenstail traditions.

Ravenstail is an ancient geometric weaving style that predates Chilkat and is characterized by white, yellow and black designs originally made using pure mountain goat wool. The Chilkat weaving style evolved from Ravenstail in the early 19th century and incorporated more complex weaving techniques that allowed the weaver to depict curvilinear formline designs.

Both styles of weaving continue to be practiced today and require expert skill, often taking a journey of over a year to complete a single robe. Join Lily and Ursala as they share these ceremonial weavings, as taught by their late mother, acclaimed Tlingit weaver and culture bearer Clarissa Rizal. They will touch on the kinetic and visual artistry, distinct revitalization journeys and historical teachings of the Chilkat and Ravenstail weavings.

See their live demos of these weavings April 3-5! 

Lily Hope and Ursala Hudson

Lily Hope weaving

Photo: Lily Hope


Lily Hope (Tlingit), Raven, T’akhdeintaan Clan, from Juneau, Alaska, is a Northwest Coast textile weaver, specializing in Chilkat and Ravenstail styles. Lily is continuing the teachings from her late mother, acclaimed weaver Clarissa Rizal, 2016 NEA Heritage Fellow. Lily practices the technical and spiritual methods in Chilkat weaving, teaching and lecturing nationally. She’s an award-winning Tlingit storyteller, an actress with notable roles in a Tlingit language performance of Macbeth at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, and Blood Wedding at Perseverance Theatre. Her current Chilkat robe is commissioned by the Portland Art Museum, and her award-winning Ravenstail weaving ensemble, Copper Child, was purchased and housed at Sealaska Heritage Institute.

Ursala Hudson is a graphic designer, printmaker and oil painter. She grew up in a creative household, enthusiastic about exploring creative mediums alongside her father and her mother, the late master Chilkat and Ravenstail weaver Clarissa Rizal. With a BA in fine art from Fort Lewis College and over a decade of digital design experience, graphic elements make their way into Ursala’s bodies of work. Although she grew up sitting at her mother’s side while she wove at her loom, she only recently began weaving her first Ravenstail robe, inspired by her sister, Lily Hope. Carried down through the generations, the trance-like Ravenstail patterns, heavy lines and blocks of color resonate strongly with Ursala’s modern graphic design sense.


This event is made possible by the Friends of Native Art (FONA) in collaboration with the Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Native Art.

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