John McIntyre performing with his Issiisaayuq mask, which tells of the shaman who foretold the coming of the first white people. Photo by James H. Barker (JHB)
"Qaneryarangqerrsaaqut-am taukut. Carrait qaneryarangqerlaryaaqut."
"There are stories behind those masks. There is something of significance to say about every little thing about them."
— Mary Mike, St. Marys, February 1994
This site presents the Yup'ik masks of the Agayuliyararput Exhibit which since 1996 has been featured in museums across the country. Created and collected during the late 19th and early 20th centuries within the Yukon, Kuskokwim, and coastal regions of southwestern Alaska, the masks tell stories of ceremonial traditions that remain important to the rich, living culture of the Yup'ik.
The exhibition, developed by Yup'ik elders and museum curators, presents these marvelous works of art within the context of the dances, stories, and complex beliefs of their makers.