The Box of Treasures: Gifts from the Supernatural

A collection of sacred masks and regalia revealing beings from the forest, sea, and supernatural realm. Created for Kwakwaka'wakw Potlatches by artist and traditional Chief Beau Dick, Gigame Walis Gyiyam (Gray whale) and other master carvers.

The Potlatch, an integral part of the oral culture was declared illegal in 1884 by the Indian Act and was banned until 1951. Participants in Potlatches during this time period could be arrested, convicted, and imprisoned for two to six months.

The resilience of the Potlatch speaks to its enduring cultural power. Today the Kwakwaka'wakw celebrate and practice their culture openly without fear of arrest, celebrating their timeless knowledge of what it means to be part of humanity, and the gifts and responsibilities that awareness creates. This exhibition honours the skilled carvers that continue to contribute to the Kwakwaka'wakw Potlatches today.


Exhibition Partners


March 4 to October 18, 2015


"Kwakwaka'wakw potlatch masks: Art made to be destroyed"
The Vancouver Sun 

Beau Dick: The Box of Treasures on Shaw TV
go! on Shaw TV Vancouver

BEAU DICK and other master carvers, "The Box of Treasures: Gifts from the Supernatural."
Galleries West

Photo in Header by Marina Dodis. Photos in slider by Owen Luck, photo of Beau Dick by Farah Nosh