When you are facing the fireplace in the living room, this is the wall to the right. Below the rows of artifacts is a sideboard I made early in my woodworking adventure. Each of these images, like all the others, has a special story. Below you can find additional vignettes from the part of my collection.
Small Inca pouring vessel, a Nazca (Pre-Inca) vessel from the south coast of Peru, and another pre-Inca item, a hat from the Hauri-Tiwanacu near Lake Titicaca, using a loop stitching method of weaving.
Santa Clara Pueblo pot, Zia Pueblo pot, Tsimshian Cedar root basket with beargrass imbrication design.
In this cabinet (junk mahogany with Claro walnut panels) are holy relics from America’s greatest contribution to world art and culture — jazz. Similar ones line the entire living room, totally about 3000 LP’s, and when I need the kind of consolation I talked about in the homepage, it is here that I often go first.
This group of objects from the north (Alaska or Greenland) has come from a variety of sources, from Bath, England (the old and rare whalebone mask on the left) to Copenhagen (the elegant Greenland kayak model on the bottom). I made the case at the top, using old redwood in order to give the objects a quiet background. Some of the objects are children’s toys and some are real working tools.
From the bottom, a Greenland kayak, with all the accessories being genuine scaled down versions of real hunting tools. The other two model kayaks are Alaskan Eskimo style, with sea mammal hide . The upper parka is of seal gut, just as the real ones are. The three masks are whalebone.. The one on the left is very old and unusual, and I love the one in the middle. The skewed expression is something shamans do in their dances, as a sign of heightened emotional state.
Native American baskets, left and center ones from northern California and right one from the Tlingit of southeast Alaska. The design is an example of false embroidery, in which the design does not show on the inside. Like most examples of the best Native American baskets that are available today, they were made to be sold because traditional work was no longer available. Soak up the bittersweet flavor of the pride that went into such beautiful work, despite the inherent humiliation in selling to tourists looking for curios.
A new basket by Norma Fox of Oakland, CA.
Walrus tusk cribbage board, Inuit (“Eskimo” acceptable for Alaskan natives but not Canadian) Their choice, right?
Wonderful small shallow basket from the Panamint tribe in the Death Valley area. These people live in oa truly harsh environment, yet created masterpieces of weaving, that is until their culture was brought to the brink of extinction by greed and carelessness of conquering outsiders. Native peoples around the world are down, but not out. Shall we take some responsibility for our ancestors’ mistakes?
A lidded miniature from the Klamath river area of northern California, 2” diameter. 476 shows the inside of the lid, still with the original color because of protection from light
A little wonder, as so many of the Pomo baskets are, with about half of the quail top-knot feathers missing. Fine, fine stitching.
Miniature Maidu, from the northern Sierra foothills, with redbud for the reddish decoration.