This mask represents my son, Douglas A. David, who carries the family name Up-yin-me-a. The name was last carried by my parental grandfather, who was a master canoe builder as was his father and grandfather.
The painted design on this mask was inspired by painted designs on our old canoe models and ceremonial paddles. The paddle heads crowning the top of the mask represents Nuu-chah-nulth canoe paddles, honouring canoe builders and pullers.
Joe David was born in 1946 at Opitsaht, a Clayoquot village on Meares Island, on the western shore of Vancouver Island. The family resettled to Seattle, Washington, in 1958—and they moved frequently during his teen years. His father, Hyacinth David, was a respected chief and elder of the Clayoquot nation, and even though he had removed his family from Nuu-chah-nulth territory, he remained connected to the village and practiced the traditional values and ceremonies.
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