Dawson Matilpi

Dawson Matilpi-Peel was born August of 1999 in Victoria, British Columbia and he is from the Kwakwaka'wakw and Upper Nicola nations. The second eldest of eight siblings, Dawson is now the proud father of a little girl. His great-grandfather, Master carver Oscar Matilpi Sr. (1933-1999) was one of the principal carvers at Thunderbird Park in Victoria, British Columbia, and he has two poles standing at the Royal British Columbia Museum. Dawson’s grandfather Oscar Matilpi Jr. was also a carver of totems, masks and potlatch masks. Both of them influenced Dawson through their knowledge of the traditional Kwakwaka’wakw style.

Dawson is enthusiastic about learning more about traditional teachings, language and values of his ancestry. He first started carving with the Victoria Native Friendship Centre (VNFC), when they were seeking young Native carvers to assist in carving a totem pole, which was raised in front of VNFC in March 2016. A quick learner, Dawson picked up Northwest carving techniques quickly.

Dawson became an apprentice of Master carver Moy Sutherland in 2016 after working with him on the VNFC project. He was interested in working with Moy because of his talent, passion and extensive experience and knowledge. His other influences include Carey Newman, Beau Dick, Rande Cook and his uncle, Ned Matilpi. Dawson is fascinated by the stories and characters in Northwest Coast cultures and enjoys bringing his ideas to life. He is now developing his own style of art based on his heritage and the instruction he has received over the years and is inspired to improve his skills and knowledge.

1 items

Raven Panel
Dawson Matilpi (Kwakwaka'wakw)

Raven is central to coastal mythology. As a culture hero, a transformer, and a trickster, his adv...

Raven is central to coastal mythology. As a culture hero, a transformer, and a trickster, his adventures at the beginning of time released the sun and the moon and brought the world into existence. Raven is identified by its straight beak and lack of ears or plumage on the head.