A Mermaid

A mermaid is a legendary aquatic creature with the head and torso of human female and the tail of a fish. They were known to sing sailors to their deaths, like the Siren, or squeeze the life out of drowning men while trying to rescue them.

Tales of mermaids are nearly universal. The first known mermaid stories appeared in Assyria, ca. 1000 BCE. Atargatis, was a goddess who loved a mortal shepherd and in the process killed him. Ashamed, she jumped into a lake to take the form of a fish, but the waters would not conceal her divine nature. Thereafter, she took the form of a mermaid human above the waist, fish below. The Greeks recognized Atargatis under the name Derketo, where she was often conflated with Aphrodite. - Wikipedia.com

Inspired by JW Waterhouse's
"AMermaid" 1900
Oil on canvas 38 x 26 inches (98 x 67 cm)
Royal Academy of Arts, London

100% Canadian One belief that Canadians hold near and dear is that we are protectors of a vast wilderness. Our national emblem is, after all, the beaver. We see ourselves canoeing across lakes and down rapid filled rivers - just as the voyageurs did a couple of hundred years ago. This "vision" usually comes to us as we cross the Canadian Rockies - on the TransCanada highway - in a Winnebago.

Our mermaid was born in Prince George, British Columbia. Her mother was Woodland Cree from Ontario and her father Irish-Scottish Canadian. She was raised in a "white" household in the Rockies, has spent a couple of summers with the Haida on the Queen Charlotte Islands, and is an excellent soapstone carver.

The waterfall is from Central Canada (Ontario & Quebec), the smelter is typical of many and could be from just about anywhere (it's located in southern BC), the gravel bar was found along the Columbia River. I fashioned the mermaid's tail from a Coho salmon photographed at Steveston. Steveston was once a village - home to several large canneries. It's now part of Richmond, a suburb of Vancouver. It's still home to a fishing fleet, but its main purpose in life is to serve fish & chip to tourists.

There's nothing from the Maritimes. Now that's Canadian - 100% Canadian.

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