A raven mask, brightly painted with hinged wings, clasping a carved ermine figure in its beak, below which is a sisyutl or serpent figure.
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Raven and Sisiyutł

Raven and Sisiyutł


Xi’xa’niyus, Bob Harris (attributed)

Catalogue Information


Wood, Cedar; Bark, Cedar; Paint; Feather, Eagle; Fibre, Wool; Metal, Steel


82.0 cm

Accession Number


Physical Description

Raven forehead mask that incorporates an ermine in the bird's mouth and a Sisiyutł. It is rigged so that the ermine moves on a track in and out of the mouth of the raven. The beak, eyebrows, temple design, eyelid line and eye of the raven are painted black with possible graphite admixture. The eyesocket is painted green, the upper and lower lips are painted red, as is an inverted 'u' which forms the nostril. The lower jaw is articulated and opens to reveal a carved ermine with white body and black eyes, nostril, and lips. The wings which are separate pieces sweep back from the head. The wings have the natural red cedar as the ground. They are decorated with a two-dimensional design featuring a salmon trout’s head ovoid to which is attached a pointed U form, the inside of which is split twice and filled. Secondary elements are in green, red and white, as well as cross-hatching and dashing. Painted black, red and green on natural wood, the tail features a humanoid head with a pair of red hands below. On top of the head are four U-form stacks suggesting feathers. Sisiyutł is placed at the raven's throat, functioning as a head band placed across the brow of the person wearing the headdress. It consists of a central humanoid face and profile serpent heads with re-curved tongues extending back on either side.