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Nuxalk Masks

Part of Northwest Coast Hall.

Displays of colorful Nuxalk masks from North American Ethnographic Collection.

These masks represent supernatural beings and were worn by dancers who performed in the winter ceremonies of the Nuxalk (referred to in the hall as the "Bella Coola"). A ceremony lasted four nights and consisted of many songs, dances, and mythological dramas. Each dance was thought to be an imitation of one performed by a supernatural being in the world above.