It is a Hamatsa Dance Screen. The outer figure is a Sisiutl (two headed serpent) which was my mother’s main crest. The Sisiutl was sort of the guardian to the people who raided other villages and it could change itself into anything—like a canoe if needed.The inner design is the Hamatsa (wildman) which is my dance given to me at my mother’s memorial potlatch.
The Hamatsa had to be tamed before the potlatch could begin. If it were a screen to be used it would measure about eight to 12 feet. It was also used to shield the dancers so they could change.
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