Piece description from the artist
Native American folklore has no dragons, but there are a couple of close analogs. One is Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent, of the Central American cultures which looks a bit like the oriental dragons. In North America, however, there is the Uktena, the horned serpent, found particularly in the Southeast.
Uktena was a giant snake covered in shining scales with horns on its head and a single giant crystal, called Ulun'suti, in it's forehead. They lived in the water and were often associated with the elements of storms: rain, thunder, lightning. Its breath was said to be lethal (though not specified as fiery, this is still another similarity with dragons).
One particular legend involving Uktena, is that of Aganunitsi. Aganunitsi was a powerful Shawnee medicine man who was captured in a battle with the Cherokee. Rather than being executed by his captors, he volunteered to hunt the Uktena and bring the Ulun'suti back to them. He searched for the beast through the southern Appalachians. As he got closer to the great snake, he started to encounter giant frogs, snakes and other monstrous reptiles made so by their proximity to the Uktena. Eventually, he finds the Uktena near Gahuti Mountain (in what is now Fort Mountain State Park in North Georgia). He kills the beast and returns to the Cherokee with the jewel and afterwards lives with them as an important member of their tribe.
I especially like the legend of the Uktena as, being Creek folklore as well as Cherokee, it was likely told of by some of my ancestors. Also, the story of Aganunitsi takes place from not far from where I live. I've actually hiked Fort Mountain State Park.
When it comes to stories like this, there is generally no canonical version and the details are often different from one telling to another. I decided to add my own detail in that the hero is carrying a musket and powder horn rather than the more traditional bow and arrow as such weapons were quite common among the southeastern tribes in the late 18th century.
More About This Print
- Our high-quality giclee prints are produced on a proprietary material carefully selected for its ability to display rich, vibrant colors, capture subtle detail, and remain crinkle-free. Limited Edition of 100.
- The giclee print sizes shown here measure the outer dimensions of the frame, not the print. There is a 2″ border around the image on each print for matting and framing.
- Our minimal, black frames are made of a natural, recycled material that won’t warp or dent like solid wood. Each frame comes with a custom 4 ply, white mat.
More About This Print
- Each canvas print is gallery-wrapped and stretched on 1.5’’ stretcher bars with a semi-gloss finish. Limited Edition of 100.
- The print sizes quoted above measure the outer dimensions of the stretched canvas print and the printed image spans the full dimensions quoted.
- Framing currently unavailable. All canvases are printed with mirror imaging along the 1.5’’ stretcher profile for a polished, unframed display.
Buy original artwork and support today's working artists.
- 40.0" x 30.0"
Unfortunately, the original of this work is not available. However, one of our friendly Personal Curators can reach out to the artist to see if they’d be interested in a commission. Get in touch.
TurningArt members enjoy fresh art at home for less than the cost of going to a movie each month.