Carvings and Commerce: Model Totem Poles 1880-2010 by Michael D. Hall & Pat Glascock

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Carvings and Commerce: Model Totem Poles 1880-2010 by Michael D. Hall & Pat Glascock
with contributions from Robert Davidson, Kate Duncan, Aaron Glass, Aldona Jonaitis, Christopher W. Smith and Charlotte Townsend-Gault

4to. pp. 223. profusely illustrated. checklist of totem pole makers. suggested reading. index. hardcover boards. dw. (fine condition). Saskatoon: Mendel Art Gallery in association with Washington University Press, [2011].

ISBN-10: 0295991496 / ISBN-13: 9780295991498


Carvings and Commerce celebrates the model totem pole in all its myriad forms. Native American carvers supplying curios for the Pacific Northwest souvenir trade in the late 1800s created the first model totem poles. Over time, totem poles came to be perceived as generalized icons of "Indian life" and Native groups all across North America began making model totems for the ever-expanding tourism industry that attended the popularization of automobile travel. By the middle of the 20th century, totems were being produced by a variety of non-Native groups, including Boy Scouts and hobby crafters. Native artists in the 21st century, in both the United States and Canada, have revitalized the model totem pole tradition, sharing it with a growing fine-art audience. Carvings and Commerce traces the history of model totem poles from the end of the 19th century to the present time. Internationally recognized scholars and artists examine the issues of politics, economics, cultural identity, tradition, and aesthetics that have shaped the evolution of the model totem pole for over a hundred and thirty years.