Barry Dana (Artist Profile)

Barry Dana, Penobscot Culture Bearer

In 1995, the Hudson Museum created an exhibit “Tree and Tradition: Brown Ash and Native American Basketmaking”, and as part of that exhibit, the Museum hosted its first Wabanaki Art Market. Barry Dana joined us at this inaugural show, with his birchbark baskets for sale. Since then, he has not missed one show. The interest in his work and the success of the show encouraged Barry to take up this ancient tradition, and today his work is among the collections of museums across the country.

Barry is one of the foremost Wabanaki birchbark artists and makes not only baskets, but also wigwams and canoes. He has made a canoe for the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens and wigwams for the Skowhegan History House, Rangeley Museum, Penobscot Nation, and the Hudson Museum. When creating one of his works, he often includes etched portraits of Wabanaki people. Barry says that his art brings out the ancestors in the bark.

In addition to offering etched birchbark baskets – some with porcupine quill decorations – he and his family are known for their maple syrup. The sap comes from their homestead in Solon, Maine, where they use a wood fired evaporator to make syrup in small batches. The syrup comes in a variety of grades from amber to rich and robust to extra strong, and tends to sell out quickly during the shows.

Barry also presents educational programs at schools for students in grades 4 and up. He likes to engage students in thinking about what it is like to be native, and the impact of people on the environment and climate change. Through his art, advocacy for Wabanaki people, and his drive to educate, he is a Wabanaki Culture Bearer.

For more information, please visit: Follow Barry on Facebook (

Photos: Barry Dana – Birchbark Basket Maker

Barry Dana (Artist Profile)
Barry Dana, Birchbark Basket Maker

Video: Barry Dana – Birchbark Basket Maker

Upcoming 2023 Wabanaki Winter Market (Saturday, December 9, 2023) :

Organized by the Hudson Museumthe Wabanaki Winter Market is New England’s largest holiday gathering of Wabanaki artists. The annual december event features Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance award-winning weavers, as well as new artists representing the next generation of weavers.

The event is supported in part by grants from the Maine Office of Tourism and the Onion Foundation

Location of the event: The Collins Center for the Arts (2 Flagstaff Road|Orono, Maine)
Date: Saturday, December 9, 2023 (from 9 am to 3 pm)
Contact: Gretchen Faulkner | Director, Hudson Museum (207.581.1904)

For event updates, please visit: