Sunday, January 15, 2017

Totem Poles

Duncan celebrates its origins on native territory by including totem poles carved by traditional carvers in its city panorama. Each carving shows the style of the individual artist but much of the subject matter and the way it is pictured comes from way back in history. Several totem poles may be set in groups and single totem poles can be seen in front of buildings or greenery or parking lots. That type of distribution shows on some old photographs of native villages (minus parking lots) as well.  Here are some of them beginning with a group photo.

The downtown area is the main showcase. Stories and short biographies of the carvers are displayed near the poles.

A few more:
Cedar Man Walking Out Of The Log. Carver: Gwe-la-e-gwe-la-gya-les (Richard Hunt)

Here is more of this carver's work: The rest of the catalog also is well worth perusing. It shows additional incredible artwork. 

A couple of closeups:
 Family Pole (detail)

Owl Spirit (detail)

Most of Duncan's totem poles can be seen on my Flickr site, including the informative images, here: and


  1. What a terrific photo-essay Joseph! I love how you saw and composed these shots, you've done a marvelous job of bringing these amazing poles to life for everyone far and wide to enjoy.

    1. Thank you Scott. These totem poles need the great outside where they may be admired from a distance or close up. Sometimes I can almost see the artist carver looking at me through his pole. They provide incredible art on our streets.

  2. And so many 'togs can't find anything to photograph, in their own home town! Brilliant photo essay, Joseph - outstanding both technically and aesthetically !!

    1. Thank you jean pierre Guaron. Even when thinking I know every square inch of this neighbourhood new scenes (that have been here since well before I set foot on these shores) still show themselves.