Raven took the sun from the Box of Daylight and put it in the sky to give us light. This portrayal is by Odin Lonning, a Tlingit from Juneau. The pin is 1¼ inches in diameter. Sterling silver. Made in USA.
Long ago, by the mouth of a great river, lived an old chief and his only daughter. It was said that the old man kept the sun hidden away in a box. Raven wanted to have this sun and had tried to get it many times without success. At length he hit on a plan. He noticed that the daughter went to the well every day for a supply of water, so he transformed himself into a pine needle, dropped into her drinking water and was swallowed. She became pregnant and in due time he was reborn as the chief's grandson. Thus he gained access to the house.
Raven became a great favorite with the old chief who let him have anything he asked for. One day he asked to play with the sun box, but this the old man refused to grant. Raven gave him no peace, and finally, weary of his whining, his grandfather let him play with it. The Raven quickly took the box and rolled it about until he had it outside. Then dashing the box to pieces, he took the sun in his beak and placed it in the sky, where it has been giving light to the world ever since.
Odin Lonning (Tlingit name SH NOW TAAN) was born in Juneau, Alaska. He is Woosh Ke Taan (Eagle/Shark) Clan through his Tlingit mother. He is named after his Norweigian father.
At age ten, Odin saw his first traditional dance performance. This motivated him to explore Tlingit art. Local native artists such as Lincoln and Amos Wallace, Johnny Avatok, and Nathan Jackson inspired him, along with the culture centers and museums in Ketchikan, Haines, and Sitka.
In 1989 Odin attended the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico. While in Santa Fe, he collaborated with another artist to form Wolfsong Arts. They exhibited in larger powwows, juried invitationals, and museum shows throughout the West and Midwest.
Seeking a deeper understanding of the culture essential to his artwork, Odin started dancing and learning traditional songs. He first danced with the Juneau Tlingit Dancers in 1992, and later with Seattle-based Ku-Tee-Ya Dancers. He currently dances with Xudzidaa Kwaan dance group of Angoon, Alaska.
Odin lives on Vashon Island near Seattle , where he works on multiple projects and private commissions, does cultural presentations like Keet Shu-ka with his partner for nonprofit groups, museums, schools, galleries, and treatment centers.