Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Masks, frontlets & headdresses

Tsimshian masks played an important role during the winter ceremonies. Secret societies also used masks called NAX NOCS. These were the privilege of chiefs, who were initiated.

Frontlets and headdresses are used by the royal families and upper class people, to show the rights to the crests, history and territories. All these were guarded possessions, which were passed on to the next heir.
By studying older pieces in Museums and private collections I am able to redesign and carve the arts of my people, the TSIMSHIAN 1st nation of British Columbia, Canada.

All pieces come with a write up, description, bio and guarantee of authentic Tsimshian art piece, and can be sent anywhere in the world. I take private commissions and custom orders.

* Please click on all mask pictures for larger view.

  Price 1,800.00 Euro + shipping costs

Nagunak – chief of the sea. – MASK FOR SALE!
He heard a anchor dragging on his roof, so he sent his servant.
The servant of the chief of the sea wealth, called the blue cod, the servant bumped into a canoe and was grabbed and tortured by cutting the sides of the mouth then send back in the water. This is the blue cod servant.
After which the chief of the sea heard this he took the canoe + 4 men down into his plank house…..
24 cm high x 18 cm wide x 20 cm deep , wood, cedar bark and paint.
Complete story is included with this mask and can ship anywhere in the world, contact me for more info.

  • click on photo to enlarge view


Price 1800,00 Euro

Eagle dance mask with a articulated lower beak. Completely rigged to dance, and fully dressed with cedar bark. Painted with graphite mixed black and inlayed with abalone shell eyes.
24 cm high x 22 cm wide x 26 cm deep ,is the mask size not including the strands of cedar bark.
The mask has been danced, I just felt that it needed a bit more cedar bark & a new coat of bio oil.
This mask is for sale, for more information, please send email, or telephone.
It can be shipped worldwide and comes with a write up, bio, and guarantee of workmanship.




Out of birch wood, was started as green fresh wood, blocked out, formed then dried, thinned out, designed, painted, opercula shell teeth were set, and then the copper U form nailed in, and then the hair was set in and glued. Final step was to oil it, and add a signature on the back. This was a challenge as the person wanted it similar to another artist mask, but with some changes and my design style. I did the best I could to fulfill her wishes and and at least honor the artist`s rendition, but at the same time, making sure it was not a duplicate. This form has taught me a lot of how to figure out other forms and to balance out the designs + ideas wanted.
The name of this mask is” tattooed woman warrior”, with a butterfly inside the copper form, an orca whale beside and salmon for eyebrows, on the cheeks are hummingbirds and under the jaw sits a frog. If you want a special piece or custom designed project, pm or email me for more info.


A favorite of mine, a red cedar raven mask, with articulated lower beak. Completely rigged for dancing. This mask has been danced + traveled all over Europe. You can own a piece like this, just contact me for more info.

Red cedar, abalone shell, leather, cedar bark, paint. Click on picture for enlarged view.


Inside of raven, a head dress used by a prince of the raven clan, used by a family member who has connections with Txamsem, the raven transformer. There are many stories of raven`s journeys.

Alder, abalone shell, human hair – private commission, PM or email for more info or to order.

Please click on picture for enlarged view.


Papemache masks, I make these to be used by children in schools, so they portray the stories I tell to them, they are lightweight and easy to transport. I make also different animal forms upon request. For more information please contact me by email or messaging. Click on picture to enlarge view.


Orca mask , out of red cedar  carved + painted with abalone shell inlay + shredded cedar bark

private commission

Hands of the raven head dress, out of alder, abalone shell and human hair

Depicts the transformation of raven to human and the raven brings daylight.

Private commission, click on photo for larger view, pm or email for more info.





Butterfly – eagle mask- out of Linde wood,with abalone shell inlays and paint.

This was a special commission and challenged me to design the butterfly around the form of the eagle.

And was a special request for the green color, enjoyed designing and carving out the forms.

The butterfly represents a person who is not of the tribe & has no crest, they are adopted

and use the butterfly as a crest, we say that the Europeans are like butterflies, flying here and there.

You can also request a special mask or frontlet, let me know and thank you for looking.


Bear mother frontlet, out of alder, abalone shell + paint.

Private commission, pm or email for more info. Click on photo for enlarged view.


Red eagle at dawn mask, carved out of alder and inlaid with abalone shell, and shredded cedar bark.

There was a young prince who fed eagles, and he was deserted, and early in the morning the eagles brought food for him to survive, and finally enough to become wealthy with trade. Private commission, PM or email for more information, click on picture for enlarged view.


Another mask representing raven brings daylight, with Raven as a child in one ear and his mother in the other ear. The abalone shell on the beak represents the reflection of daylight.

Alder, abalone shell

A private commission, PM or email for more info or to order. Click on image for larger view.


Wolf headdress, out of Alder, abalone shell, cedar bark, and horse hair

This would be used during the winter ceremonies or feasts by one of the wolf crest tribal members.




Eagle mask out of alder, abalone shell, and cedar bark, representing a young eagle, these were danced during the winter ceremonies and feasts, by a young eagle prince, who was to become the next chief of the eagle tribe.



otter transformation mask, out of alder, copper, abalone shell, horse hair

A otter is designed and carved on the forehead of mask and teeth are hammered into form.

Private commission, PM or email for more info or to order. Click on picture for enlarged view.




young eagle mask, out of Linde wood, rigged to be danced with shredded  cedar bark


Raven brings daylight frontlet, out of alder + abalone shell

Private commission, pm or email for more info. Click on photo for enlarged view.





Spirit of the moon, carved out of red cedar and has a split raven design around the rim of the full moon.




Raven mask, in human form, he is called Txamsem, it is he who brought daylight to the Tsimshian. This mask is out of western red cedar, the tree was over 450 years old. With cedar bark, feathers, copper and abalone shell. This mask has been on many exhibits, has been shown and used for many thousands of children, You can see on the far right, that this mask has been with me for over 20 years now. Has much energy and spirit in it.




Eagle woman mask, the salmon eaters history, tells of how this group came down from the north and it´s epic journey, the capture of a young prince from a Kalhon, then on the other side the capture of a great warrior by a supernatural halibut, and then the thunderbird who came along as the halibut came ashore.  The eagle woman is the linage of this tribal group and shows her royal lineage with a abalone shell labaret in her lip.

This one is for sale, pm or email me for more info. Click on photo to enlarge view.



Eagle prince frontlet, out of alder + abalone shell

Private commission, pm or email for more info.

Possible to commission different designs + symbols, contact for more info.






Wildman of the woods, or over here it is called “Krampus” Out Linden, antlers, bone, abalone shell, cedar bark.




Young eagle prince, Linden, abalone shell, cedar bark







Prince of raven frontlet, made out of yellow cedar, with spirit helpers on the sides, abalone shell and copper, these are symbols of wealth and were for the royal lineage. These pieces where used by young persons in line for chief. Yellow cedar, abalone shell, copper, cedar bark, furs, cloth, paint.


Raven frontlet, alder + abalone shell

Private commission, pm or email for more info. Click on photo for enlarged view.






Raven head dress out of red cedar, made for a young prince of ravens, used by him as he sat beside the chief, showing he status as the next in line. This would then be put away, and used again by the nest in line to be a upcoming chief. Made out of red cedar, yew wood, abalone shell, feathers, fur, cedar bark band.


mountain goat 15


Mountain  goat mask, tells the story of our people when they lived up the Skeena river many generations before.

Alder, fur, abalone shell, horn, was made complete for dancing with eye holes.


bearmother 15


Bear mother mask, a famous story along the Skeena river, this piece is in permanent collection in Stuggart Museum.

Yellow cedar, copper, abalone shell




The headdress was used and danced already. The Thunderbird is known up and down the coast, and is also a sub-crest of my people.
It would fly out of it´s mountain home high above and seek out whales, the thunder roar comes from its flapping wings. When it locates it prey, it would blink it´s eyes and send out lighting bolts, killing it, and would grasp the whale in it´s claws to bring home to the family for food.

Linde wood, abalone shell inlays, cedar bark, leather, paint and hair



Tsimshian Bawus mask, –  a monkey like wild man of the woods. This spirit lives near Sa Bawus, which is called Jap point in our area, where our ancestors had camps. At night it would climb up on the roof and throw rocks down into the fire pit, spreading sparks everywhere. The people ran outside, but found nothing, after a time doing this over and over again, the people gathered rocks and threw them in the darkness, to which a hail of stones flew back, and everyone ran inside. In the morning the people examined the rocks and found that these were only found below the low tide zone, but during the night, it was high tide? This is one story that was told to me, and there is other info about the Bawus. I can personally make one for you, complete with the story, description, bio and guarantee of a authentic Tsimshian  mask. Click on picture for a enlarged view.

Out of Linde, with hair, paint and opercula shell inlays.




 white spirit otter mask, otter was a shaman´s helper, and a transformer. 
alder, abalone shell, copper, hair

eagle young 15

young eagle mask
represents a young eagle, with copper, abalone shell, as forms of wealth, which means this piece was made for a prince.
Alder,copper, abalone shell, cedar bark, paint


 Raven of the north, a strong character, he lives in the north and is from the royal lineage.

Symbols of wealth: abalone shell and copper pieces, the reflection of light, brightness.

Alder, abalone shell, copper, hair



Eagle Chief of the sky
Alder,abalone shell,cedar bark




Ligidaduuls – woman spirit of the sea.
dance mask, shows the drown + devoured soul in the eyes.
The mask was made out of alder, then stored till the fungus (spalding) started on it. This gives it the fine colored grains.
alder, opercula,cedar bark ,abalone shell

Contact for info, to commission.

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