Rufus Moody was born in Skidegate village, Haida Gwaii, on the Queen Charlotte Islands. He began his carving career well after the smallpox epidemic of the late 19th century (which decimated the Haida population from over 8000 to about 800), and well before the cultural and artistic resurgence of the early 1960s. While much of the culture was being pushed towards extinction through assimilation, argillite carving was still being promoted and encouraged by a very small existing market.
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