Kerry R. Wood

Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki Nation

Juried Artist since 2016
Image of Kerry R. Wood.
Kerry R. Wood

Kerry Wood/Kalli Abazi is a citizen of the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki Nation.  In 2016 she completed a 3 year apprenticeship program with Jeanne Brink through the Vermont Folklife Center Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program for making traditional Black Ash and Sweetgrass baskets. 

Elvine Obomsawin, Kerry’s Great-Grandmother, and her family made and sold baskets to tourists in Vermont in the early to mid-1900’s. Jeanne Brink is also Kerry’s cousin, and hearing the stories from their Obomsawin family heritage while learning basket making brought her past alive! When she is making baskets, she feels a deep connection with those who have gone before her, and is at peace and connected. Her husband helps prepare the ash by harvesting the ash trees and, with their son Aaron, pounds and splits the ash. The family works together to create the materials for baskets from the harvest of the tree to the final project.

Kerry has baskets on display at the Vermont Maritime Museum, The Abenaki display at the Burlington Airport, and at the Bennington Museum. Black Ash and baskets remain a critical aspect of Abenaki culture and heritage. They are part of Ndakinna, our land. Kerry teaches Abenaki people and others the history and craft of Abaznodaka as well as the language of the Abenaki people, Alnôbaôdwa, so the culture and heritage will continue. She is also collaborating with people across Vermont to help combat the impact of the Emerald Ash Borer, which threatens the very existence of the Black Ash trees. Basket making is part of the Abenaki soul and heritage, and it is critical to ensure it is never lost.

Contact

Phone: 802-343-2525 

Email: krwoodvermont@gmail.com

Image of Kerry Wood processing splint.
Kerry Wood processing splint for use in basketmaking.

Demonstrations (as an Apprentice with Master Basketmaker Jeanne Brink)

2016

  • Dartmouth Powwow, Dartmouth College
  • Native American Program, Dartmouth College
  • Vermont History Exposition, Tunbridge, VT

2015

  • Abenaki History Day, Hartford, VT
  • Dartmouth Powwow, Dartmouth College, NH
  • Native American Program, Dartmouth College, NH
  • Saratoga Native American Festival, Saratoga, NY

2014

  • Dartmouth Powwow, Dartmouth College, NH
  • Native American Program, Dartmouth College, NH
  • Vermont History Exposition, Tunbridge, VT

Awards

2015 

  • Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program, Vermont Folk Life Center. Middlebury, VT

2014 

  • Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program, Vermont Folk Life Center. Middlebury, VT

2013 

  • Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program, Vermont Folk Life Center. Middlebury, VT

Affiliations

  • Vermont Abenaki Artists Association