Exhibit, To The Totem Forests


'Yalis (Alert Bay)

Gwa'yasdams (Gilford Village)

Kalugwis (Turnour Island)

K'we (Mt. Stephens)

'Mi'mkwamlis (Village Island)

T'sadzis'nukwaame' (New Vancouver)

Ts'aa7ahl (Chaatl)

Q'una (Skedans)

Hlragilda (Skidegate)


Pebble Town

Gitwangak (Kitwanga)



Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

Ba'a's (Blunden Harbour)

Xwatis (Quatsino)

Q'una (Skedans)

Hlragilda (Skidegate)

Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

Caynaa (Haina)

Hiellen (Tow Hill)




'Mamalilicoola, B.C. 1928' / Walter Joseph Phillips / Glenbow Collection / (53.1.8) "We entered a strange world as we emerged from a mass of head-high nettles on the sward immediately beneath a tall and magnificent totem-pole. It stood in front of a community house, the pediment of whose facade was carved and painted with an allegorical figure of the sun, flanked by two fishes."
Phillips Wet Paint, n.d.:103

The "two fishes" flanking the ancestral sun are actually part of a sisiyl (double-headed serpent) figure rendered horizontally at the top of the house front façade.

"Mamalilicoola, B.C.
This is exactly as I saw the scene, except that the canoe on the beach replaces a
log. . . .

"The two figures, and the direction of their movement, are a great aid to the composition, leading the eye inevitably to the totem-pole, and correlating that with the whole foreground. They are placed at the foot of the pole within an angle, and serve also to relieve the mass of green that covers the bank, by virtue of their shapes and colour."
Phillips Wet Paint, n.d.:104

"Totem pole at end of village, 40 feet high. Figures [top to bottom] are: an eagle [legs only remain]; killerwhale; raven; wolf; grizzly bear; man. Jim Charlie now owns it. It was erected by his grandfather whose name was Tsatsukwalis (whale)."
From fieldnotes by Wilson Duff and Helen Codere, May 11, 1955 at 'Mi'mkwamlis village

"The white people call this place Mamalilicoola, which is the name of our tribe--the people. The real name of the village is 'Mi'mkwamlis which means 'little islands out in front'."
Chief Arthur Dick, Mamalilikala tribe. Macnair personal communication, 'Mi'mkwamlis, 1970

'Cedar House Staircase and Sunburst' / Emily Carr / B.C. Archives / PDP02810 RBCM PN02808

Continue on with 'Mi'mkwamlis section

See more paintings of 'Mi'mkwamlis
See more photographs of 'Mi'mkwamlis

Home - Table of Contents - Introduction - Curator's Statement
Intro to Exhibit - List of Works - Map - Activity Centre - Bibliography - Credits