We recently spent a long weekend in New Hampshire enjoying some gorgeous fall weather and a good visit with one of our sons and his wife. While in Hanover, we were able to see the Hood Museum of Art's current exhibit Native American Art at Dartmouth. The pieces are all from the museum's collection and are definitely worth taking in. And there are dozens of wonderful fibers pieces! The exhibit runs through March 11, 2012 - if you're in the area, I highly recommend a visit. These are just two of my favorites.
|c. 1910 - 1920, Northern Athapaskan, hide, thread, glass and metal beads|
There are several pieces of beautiful embroidery work. These moccasins took my breath away! Made by an unknown Northern Athapaskan artist in the early 1900's, they were also useful - the smoked hide made them waterproof. The pattern is a typical colorful, complex design seen in many pieces made in the Subarctic. I imagine those long winter nights lent themselves to intricate pieces that took a lot of time to create!
This close-up shows the amazing detail and perfect, tiny stitches. Beautiful!
|c. 1850 - 80, Chilkat Tlingit, mountain goat wool, cedar bark, native dyes.|
Northwest Native Americans used twined cedar bark fiber to make cloth. At a museum in British Columbia years ago, I was able to feel a cedar fiber weaving (a modern day weaving, not a museum piece!) and was amazed at its softness. This wonderful Chilkat robe was woven using cedar fiber for the warp(vertical) threads and mountain goat wool for the weft (horizontal) threads and the bottom fringe. This design features a whale in the typical stylized manner. The Tlingit weave their designs from pattern boards that are passed down from generation to generation.
You can learn more about the exhibit here and view an extensive pdf guide (with lots of photos) here.
Happy Creating! Deborah