"Inspired by nineteenth century argillite carvings of miniature canoes thronging with animal and human passengers, Bill Reid constructed a 1/6-scale clay model of The Spirit of Haida Gwaii in the spring of 1986. He then enlarged the Haida canoe carrying 13 mythological Haida figures to a full-scale clay model, before the sculpture was cast in plaster over an armature of steel rod and mesh for further refinement.
This maquette was shipped to the Tallix Foundry in Beacon, New York, in 1989, where it was cast in bronze. (The original plaster is on view at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, Québec.) "