Rare Kiowa Dress and Paiute Beaded Baskets Lead Skinner’s Auction of American Indian & Ethnographic Art, December 1

Kiowa Woman's Beaded Hide Dress, c. 1870's (Lot 159, Estimate:   $60,000-80,000)

Kiowa Woman’s Beaded Hide Dress, c. 1870’s (Lot 159, Estimate: $60,000-80,000)

BOSTON, MA – Skinner, Inc. will host an auction of American Indian & Ethnographic Art at 10AM on December 1 in its Boston gallery, featuring a wide range of weavings, pottery, baskets, pre-Colombian art, and objects from the Northeast woodlands, as well as an impressive collection of American Plains Indian material. The auction includes a standout selection of Paiute beaded baskets from The George and Jackie Bernheimer Collection.

American Plains Indian Material

Leading the auction is an exceptional, museum quality Kiowa woman’s beaded hide dress (Lot 159, Estimated between $60,000-80,000).  The circa 1870’s dress has never been offered to the public and comes from the collection of Philadelphia artist, Robert Riggs.

In addition to the Kiowa dress, the auction offers a large and diverse group of Plains and related items, several of the many highlights include over 20 fine pairs of beaded moccasins, exemplified by a pair of Comanche beaded hide moccasins c. 1870 (Lot 77, $4,000-6,000); a selection of various pouches and pipe bags, highlighted by a Central Plains beaded buffalo hide possible bag, c. 1880 (Lot 147, $5,000-7,000); and an offering of sculptural items led by a Prairie carved and incised elk horn quirt (Lot 177, $8,000-12,000).

Inupiaq Carved Wood Mask, c. 19th century (Lot 205, Estimate:   $2,500-3,500)

Inupiaq Carved Wood Mask, c. 19th century (Lot 205, Estimate: $2,500-3,500)

Pacific Northwest & Alaska

Highlights from the northwest of North America include an Inupiaq carved wood mask (Lot 205, $2,500-3,500); three excellent argillite carvings from The Haida, including a platter (Lot 209, $5,000-7,000), a pipe (Lot 210, $4,000-6,000) and a rare grease bowl (Lot 211, $10,000-15,000); a Tlingit shamans whale amulet (Lot 214, $4,000-6,000); and a rare Haida child’s spruce root painted basketry hat (Lot 213, $5,000-7,000).

The Southwest

A Navajo first phase concha belt c. 1880s (Lot 226, $14,000-18,000) leads auction offerings from the southwest. Other highlights from this region include seven fine New Mexican retablos (Lots 229-235), historic photographs of Southern Plains Indians by W.S. Soule (Lot 261-269), and a selection of Navajo weavings highlighted by three Germantowns (Lots 282- 284) and late classic man’s wearing serape-style blanket (Lot 290, $8,000-10,000).

Acoma Four-color Pottery Olla, c. last quarter 19th century (Lot   299, Estimate: $4,000-6,000)

Acoma Four-color Pottery Olla, c. last quarter 19th century (Lot 299, Estimate: $4,000-6,000)

Pottery & Basketry

Skinner is pleased to offer The George and Jackie Bernheimer Collection of western beaded baskets (Lots 313-338). For the past thirty years, The Bernheimer’s focused primarily on collecting beaded baskets. Their diverse collection incorporates the rare Mono Lake, Pyramid Lake, and early twentieth century baskets, showcasing varied weaving and beading techniques and offering a historical overview of the this unique art form.

Additional pottery highlights include a large Zuni polychrome pottery owl (Lot 292, $800-1,200), an Acoma four-color pottery olla (Lot 299, $4,000-6,000), and an Apache pictorial basketry olla (Lot 312, $7,000-9,000).

Other auction highlights include, but are not limited to:

Marquesas Islands large carved coconut (Lot 17, $800-1,200)

Cook Islands ceremonial hafted adze (Lot 42, $2,500-3,500)

Nasca feather and cloth pectoral, c. 200-600 A.D. (Lot 62, $1,200-1,600)

Crow beaded horn knife and fork, c. 1880 (Lot 101, $400-600)

Lakota carved and painted wood courting flute (Lot 139, $2,500-3,000)

Woodlands wood cup (Lot 199, $4,000-6,000)

Previews, Catalogs, and Bidding

Auction previews are free and open to the public and held in Boston Tuesday, November 29 from 12-5PM; Wednesday, November 30, from 12-7PM; and Thursday, December 1, from 8-9:30AM. The print catalog is available for purchase from the Subscriptions Department at subscriptions@skinnerinc.com. Prices realized will be available at www.skinnerinc.com during and after the sale. The Skinner website enables users to view all lots in the auction, leave bids, and bid live, in real-time through SkinnerLive!

About Skinner

Skinner auctions draw international interest from buyers and consignors alike, with material regularly achieving record prices. The company’s auction and appraisal services focus on fine art, jewelry, furniture, and decorative arts from around the globe, as well as wine, fine musical instruments, rare books, Asian art, clocks, Judaica, and more. Monthly Skinner Discovery auctions feature a breadth of estate material. Widely regarded as one of the most trusted names in the business, Skinner appraisers have appeared on the PBS-TV series, Antiques Roadshow, since the show’s inception. Skinner has galleries in Boston and Marlborough, Massachusetts, as well as in New York City and Miami, Florida, with bidders participating in person, by phone, and online. Join auctions live with SkinnerLive! and Bidsquare. For more information, visit www.skinnerinc.com, find us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.


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