Meghann O'Brien

Meghann O'Brien is an independent snowboarder and Northwest Coast textile artist working in the traditions of basketry, and Yeil Koowu (Raven's Tail) and Naaxiin (Chilkat) weaving. She is descended from the Kwakwaka'wakw village of Weḵaʼyi Tʼsakwaʼlutan (Cape Mudge), the village of Kiusta, Haida Gwaii, and Dublin, IRL. Her name in the Kwakwala language is Kwaxhi'laga: "Smoke coming out of the top of the big house, welcoming people to feast and potlatch. In the Haida language she carries the name Jaad Kuujus: “Dear Woman.” Her early years were spent primarily as a snowboarder and fisherwoman in the community of Alert Bay, near Vancouver Island, BC.

In 2007 O'Brien began working in basketry with Donna Cranmer and Kerri Dick, and later learned Raven’s Tail weaving with Sherri Lightbown. She then completed a strict traditional apprenticeships under master Chilkat weaver William White. In 2011, she made the career shift from professional snowboarder to full-time artist. O'Brien’s artistic process is one of devotion to the highest expression of the art form, with a focused intention to interpret and express the teachings received through the process of creating work. She contributes to cultural revitalization through the sale and gifting of her weaving to ceremonial people, and enjoys sharing her perspectives by bringing forward old values and worldviews for integration into contemporary society. Her work is distributed between public and private galleries, museums, collectors, family, chiefs, dancers, and ceremonies. She travels globally to exhibit, lecture, and demonstrate.

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