Each ’namima or family group has a designated speaker who is knowledgeable about his family’s privileges and history.
K´wamx’udi, Charlie Walkus, ‘Namgis (Alert Bay) and Awik´inuxw (Rivers Inlet)
Owned by K´wamx’udi until its forced surrender to Indian Agent William Halliday on March 25, 1922. Halliday later displayed and photographed the seized pieces at the Parish Hall in Alert Bay. After doing an inventory, he crated the items in June, and at the end of September he shipped them to Edward Sapir at the National Museum of Man (now the Canadian Museum of History). They remained the property of the NMM until their repatriation by the U’mista and Nuyumbalees Cultural Societies in 1979.
Wood, Alder; Paint; Fibre, Cotton Twine; Metal, Iron
27.0 cm x 20.0 cm x 15.0 cm
Hayak´ant´alał Speaker Mask. The Speaker Mask in the collection is a partner to UCC-80.01.026. This mask has a humanoid face with a carved open mouth allowing for the wearer to make speeches. The eyebrows, the eyes and eyelids, the bridge of the nose, and the moustache are painted black. The eye band is solid green. On each cheek is a painted hand design. In the hand designs are faces with nostrils, lips and ovoid shapes which are red. There are also faint traces of beige that connect to the partner speaker mask. The facial design hands have two faint green “x”s above them. The mask has a unique nose with a fine bridge that is almost beak-like. The bridge on this mask is almost entirely black. Aside from these elements the mask is left unpainted. This mask has traces of cloth nailed to its rim that would have concealed the back of the wearer’s head. The mask is carved in what appears to be alder and has worm holes in many parts of the mask. Black, green, red, beige, natural wood.