Supporting the golden deer head is a golden rendition of Town Creek Indian mound, a temple site in Mt. Gilead, NC that was primarily an astronomical and ceremonial site. Its main purpose was as an observatory for measuring time through solar and lunar alignments. Town Creek Indian mound was also a burial mound and was part of a wider agricultural civilization known as the “southeastern ceremonial complex” consisting of a network of trading centers, temple towns and cities with pyramids. Most recently, from around 500 AD until European contact, a widespread and complex burial mound culture known as the Mississippian civilization flourished all over the region. Within the middle part of the shirt, the forest environment of the deer surrounds the temple mound. I used actual photos I took during a morning sunrise at Town Creek for this. On the bottom part of the shirt, leading up to the temple mound and deer, are winding earthbound trails. The eastern quadrant of the wheel also contains the winding earthbound trails and forest environment of the deer.
The deer is a universally sacred being to Indian people. It is considered a spirit ally of the shaman. The deerskin trade is of paramount importance in Native American history, as is the wearing of the deerskin dress.
Medium: Mixed media fiber conglomerate
Dimensions: 52” x 42”