BOSTON, Mass. – April 25, 2012 – Skinner, Inc. will host an auction of American Indian & Ethnographic Art on May 12th in its Boston gallery. The truly eclectic sale features a large variety of affordable items alongside rare works of art.
Northwest Coast & Eskimo Art
A vast collection of affordable Eskimo and Northwest Coast material from “The Bear Totem Store” of Wrangell, Alaska will be on offer including a fine carved and painted wooden model totem pole depicting various bird and animal figures (lot 280, estimated between $3,000 and $4,000). Also highlighted is an Eskimo model kayak with thirteen spears (lot 247, $1,000 to $1,500). Two spears feature ivory points in the form of seals, and the addition of small ivory animal attachments make the set a very interesting lot. The “The Bear Totem Store” collection also includes an excellent selection of Tlingit and Aleut baskets.
From a private Midwest collection comes a fine Northwest Coast Tlingit raven rattle with a prostrate human and kingfisher on the top and a composite face on the bottom (lot 287, $8,000 to $12,000). From the same collection is a carved and painted seated Shaman figure (lot 286, $8,000 to $12,000), and a fine Eskimo carved wood retrieval hook with a handle terminating in a carved human head shape (lot 249, $1,000 to $1,500).
Plains Indian Art
Rare Plains items include a pictographic muslin of “The Custer Fight” by Sitting Bull’s nephew Chief Henry One Bull (lot 143, $30,000 to $40,000). This drawing depicts a complete overview of the battle including One Bull attacking Reno’s Troops carrying Sitting Bull’s green shield and skull cracker. The work is drawn and colored with various pigments.
A rare Dakota Sioux carved wood board which appears to have been used for tobacco cutting will also be offered (lot 156, $8,000 to $12,000). In addition there is a Crow beaded buffalo hide rifle scabbard with fringe and beaded panels (lot 178, $15,000 to $20,000), and a rare Plains mountain lion skin bowcase and quiver set (lot 179, $25,000 to $35,000).
The sale also features some early knife sheaths including a Crow beaded hide knife sheath (lot 174, $10,000 to $15,000), and a rare Plains pony beaded knife sheath (lot 175, $15,000 to $20,000). Several fine tomahawks are on offer. Of particular note is an Eastern Plains gunstock club from the Masco collection (lot 161, $25,000 to $35,000).
Pottery, Baskets & Weavings
A select group of pottery features two fine Nampeyo jars including an early 20th century Hopi polychrome jar decorated with a single band of stylized feather devices (lot 441, $10,000 to $15,000), and another Hopi polychrome jar decorated with a continuous band of abstract feather designs at the shoulder (lot 435, $10,000 to $15,000). This particular jar was given to Rudolph H. Beeder (1905-1979), the chief engineer of the Atcheson, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Co., by a friend in the 1950s. Upon his death, the jar descended to his son, John Beeder. The lot includes a letter of authentication from Martha H. Struever.
Many fine Navajo textiles will be offered. Highlights include a pictorial textile with an abstract locomotive image (lot 403, $3,000 to $4,000). This fine homespun yarn textile was given to the present owner’s grandfather, Major General Orlando Ward, by his great uncle Brigadier General Hamilton Howes IV.
From the collection of the late Colleen James comes a fine selection of Apache and Pima baskets. In addition, there are vintage photographs of famous warriors and Curtis volumes XX, XIII, XIV, and XV in both quarto and folio formats, number 97 of 500.
Previews, Events, Catalogue, and Bidding
Previews for the auction will be held on Thursday, May 10, 2012, 12 p.m.-5 p.m. and Friday, May 11, 2012, 12 p.m.-7 p.m., and Saturday, May 12, 2012, 8 a.m.-9:30 a.m.
Illustrated catalogue #2596B is available by mail from the subscription department at #508-970-3240. It is also available at the gallery. Prices realized will be available at www.skinnerinc.com during and after the sale. Skinner’s site also allows users to view all lots in the auctions, leave bids, order catalogues, and bid live in real-time through SkinnerLive!
Skinner, Inc. is one of the world’s leading auction houses for antiques and fine art. With expertise in over 20 specialty collecting areas, Skinner draws the interest of buyers from all over the world and its auctions regularly achieve world record prices. Skinner provides a broad range of auction and appraisal services, and it is widely regarded as one of the most trusted names in the auction business. Skinner’s appraisal experts regularly appear on the PBS-TV series, Antiques Roadshow, and its specialty departments include American Furniture & Decorative Arts, American & European Works of Art, European Furniture & Decorative Arts, 20th Century Design, Fine Ceramics, Fine Silver, Fine Jewelry, Couture, Fine Musical Instruments, Asian Works of Art, Fine Wines, Rare Books & Manuscripts, Oriental Rugs & Carpets, American Indian & Ethnographic Art, Fine Judaica, Antique Motor Vehicles, Toys, Dolls & Collectibles, Discovery and Science, Technology & Clocks. Skinner galleries are located in Boston and Marlborough, Mass. For more information on upcoming auctions and events, visit Skinner’s web site www.skinnerinc.com.
- Douglas Deihl, Director of American Indian & Ethnographic Art, 508-970-3254, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Kate de Bethune, Director of Marketing, 508-970-3231, email@example.com