Indian Style Totems Descriptive Essay by SmertGuy

Indian Style Totems
A discussion of various Northwest Coast Indian style Totems.
# 110278 | 3,033 words | 7 sources | APA | 2008 | US
Published on Dec 19, 2008 in Ethnic Studies (Asia) , Art (Sculpture) , Native-American Studies (General)

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The paper discusses Totem poles of the Northwest Coast Tlingit people, how and why they were made, the meaning behind them, and their intended use. The paper highlights the unique design elements and patterns used by traditional Tlingit carvers and gives numerous illustrative examples.

Totemic Clan-Crest Animal Figures
Modern Day Totem

From the Paper:

"At one time Tlingit carving was considered important by the outside world for its ethnological value. However, at the San Francisco Exposition of 1939, and later at a 1941 exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, Tlingit carving was displayed as art. (Holm, 27) Now it is a widely acknowledged art form highly prized by art lovers worldwide. Today a number of successful native artists carve totem poles on commission, usually taking the opportunity to educate apprentices in the demanding art of traditional carving. Modern poles are almost always carried out in traditional styles, although some artists have felt free to include modern subject matter or use nontraditional styles in their execution."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Billman, Esther. Tlingit Bull. Num. I. Sitka, Sheldon Jackson Museum Press. 1975
  • Corbin, George A. Native Arts of North American, Africa, and South Pacific. New York, Harper & Row Publishers. 1988
  • Holm, Bill. Northwest Coast Indian Art: An Analysis of Form. Seattle, University of Washington Press. 1965
  • Jonaitis, Aldona. Art of the Northern Tlingit. Seattle, University of Washington Press. 1986

Cite this Descriptive Essay:

APA Format

Indian Style Totems (2008, December 19) Retrieved September 29, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Indian Style Totems" 19 December 2008. Web. 29 September. 2020. <>