These exclusive Haida Killer Whale bands (Orca rings) feature an original Native art style design by Warren Smith at The Coast Handworks Co., a world-class engraver, non-Native scholar and expert in Heraldry, Calligraphy, Celtic scrollwork and the Native formline art style of the Pacific Northwest.
Substantial and weighty, the band is domed at the top, tapered to the back and encircled by a pair of “rails” that frame and highlight the artwork. The original Haida Killer Whale art presents as an exceptionally deep carving in high relief, remarkable for its exceptional level of detail in the finite canvass of a ring. Along with the traditional Haida-style crosshatching area set well below the top surface, the distinctive design would not be possible using computer generated art and robotic etching techniques.
A popular wedding band, the Haida Killer Whale ring, also known as an Orca ring, is made to order in 10k to 22k gold as well as sterling silver.
About Haida Killer Whale
One of the most storied animals in Haida lore, the Killer Whale (AKA Orca) is considered a kindred spirit to humans, so similar is its group hunting methods, close familial bonds and fierce guardianship of offspring. In fact, many Haida stories tell of a human assuming the guise of a Killer Whale as easily as slipping on skin as if it were clothing. And as an animal that mates for life, the Killer Whale is also symbolic of lasting romance and harmony. Usually travelling in pods, Killer Whales represent the security and wisdom of a stable society and the assurances of a harmonious family or collaborative community.
In Haida lore, it is said that Killer Whales live in villages under the sea in equivalents to human villages on land. Sometimes, if a human is lost at sea, he or she is taken to one these underwater villages and transformed into a killer whale that may be seen off shore visiting humans and trying to communicate with them.
As the “master of the underwater world” and yet not a fish, the head of the Killer Whale in the Haida art form is traditionally a distinct body part attached to a long slender body (rather than merely the front of a tapered fish form). The majestic dorsal fin and powerful pectoral fins also feature prominently while the Killer Whale’s large, carnivorous teeth are almost always shown bared.