Monday, February 23, 2009

Totems

I thought I'd post a few pictures over the next few days of things you may not see every day. Totem Poles are fairly common in Alaska. Each Native tribe has it's own totem depicting the family crest and stories that go along with that tribes history. I've done a little study on the different animals depicted but am far from an expert.

On the pole to the left (at the old Knife Works shop) I can only pick out a killer whale (note the top dorsel fin sticking straight out) and a frog at the very bottom between the feet of another animal. The positions of the hands and feet and what the hands are holding often help to depict a certain animal.


This brightly colored totem is at Clitheroe Center at Point Woronzoff. The frog in this one is easy to see. I think the people around the chest of the bird is probably not true to native form, but more of a modern adaptation of the totem pole.
















This one is located in front of the Veteran's Affairs office on C street. It is really old and faded, but you can clearly see a human form and a Raven or Eagle.

This one is right outside one of the best eating establishments in Anchorage, the Arctic Roadrunner on Old Seward Highway. I believe it is either a Raven or Eagle on top, but the antennas throw me off - I don't think a butterfly would be considered an authentic design, but it does somewhat look like a moth or butterfly.
I've always wanted to carve a totem for our family, with my Dad at the top as a Grizzly Bear. The family totem would also contain a deer (mom), a wolverine (JP) a wolf (Kathy), a beaver (myself - I like to build and create things), an owl (Kris) and a rabbit (Alicia).

5 comments:

Jenny said...

Thats so cool.....never thought of myself as a wolverine. When you do it, you need grunt work done, I be your girl...K?

Aunt Krissy said...

That would be alot of work!
Timmmmmmmberrrrrrr!

PAK ART said...

J - you are either wolverine or bear, (don't take offense) but you are kind of always ready to take someone/thing on.

Jenny said...

None taken and I think I might be mellowing with age....Thank God

crochet lady said...

It is kind of interesting to associate our personalities with animals. I wonder what I would be? I have to think on that.

Thanks for the pictures, it is nice to get a view out of the ordinary.