Native America

Native American Octopus mask

Q:  Got this mask from a neighbor who passed away. Was told a few names who it could be from the signature, done a lot of research and can’t confirm an artist nor tribe.  Logan, 1224

A:  Let’s not give up on this excellent, very original tribal mask from the Northwest Coast of Canada or the US called “Transforming Octopus.” Unfortunately I can’t read the carver’s signature. There are a number of skilled Indian carvers from this area and plenty of collectors from all over who could help us learn more about this mask. I hope some of them make a comment.

Here’s my comment. NWC Indian carvers make some of the best masks in the world. Their technical training is top-notch. The carving and decoration is perfect, but more importantly, the ideas and designs can be breath-taking. Look at this highly abstracted version of an octopus changing colors prior to attacking!  A


  • Jim Dutta

    This Northwest Coast Octopus transformation mask was carved by John C. Hudson of the Tsimshian tribe. John lives in Seattle Washington and his father, Jack Hudson is credited with reviving Tsimshian art in the home region of Metlakatla Alaska; this mask happens to even be featured on the artist’s personal website at . You’re welcome. Jim Dutta 🙂

  • Jim Dutta

    Artist: John C. Hudson
    Tribal affiliation: Tsimshian

    Images of this mask can be seen on the artist’s personal website.
    John is located in Seattle, Washington.

    You’re most welcome. Jim D.

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