Dzunukwa or Wild Woman of the Woods, deeply carved, near black finish, large pursed lips and tufts of hair
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Wild Woman of the Woods

Dzunuk´wa by Pauline Alfred

Catalogue Information


Owned by Sam Charlie 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. In 1995 Sam Charlie's daughter, Mary Beans (nee Charlie) requested her father's regalia be transferred from Nuyumbalees to U'mista for display.


Wood, Cedar; Hide; Hair, Horse; Paint


35.0 cm x 27.5 cm x 31.0 cm

Accession Number


Physical Description

Dzunuk´wa mask, carved from a single piece of wood, except for the ears which were nailed on. The mask is painted black and red with a typical Dzunuk´wa expression with pursed lips. Two rows of hair plugs are present on both sides at the top. The eyebrows, eyelashes and goatee are all fur strips nailed to the mask. The eye sockets, lips, cheeks, temples, nares and nostrils (uncarved) are all painted red. Black, red, blue, white, brown.