Fine Art | Acoma | "Long Hair" Sculptures


Vintage Acoma "Long Hair" Sculptures, Signed FD Aragon, NM / Carved, Painted Cottonwood Root/ Native American Fine Art

$325.00
These tall, fascinating Native American sculptures were hand carved and hand painted by F.D. Aragon, from the Acoma Pueblo in New Mexico. Intricately carved of cottonwood root and hand painted in turquoise, yellow, white, red and black, these sculptures are a modern take on the traditional "Long Hair" katsinas, dolls that represent spiritual beings. Since the Long Hair beings' purpose was to bring rain, their cascades of hair represent falling water from the sky. This pair of carvings has so many details, we will mention just a few for each. 

The taller of the two Long Hairs is topped with a beautifully carved feather that has a drum at its base that's decorated with turquoise and yellow diamonds. The feather is 9 inches long, with the entire piece measuring 16 inches tall on an oval base about 4 inches by 5 inches. The tiny being has a paint-decorated face, is wearing turquoise beads, and is surrounded by long curving hair with a carved, painted feather in it. At the base is a carved representation of Acoma Pueblo, atop the steep ascending steps.
4665 Acoma Long Hair Carvings bottom of feather stand carved Acoma-and head bottm of stand-1290 x 500.jpg

The Long Hair being is at the top of the 14 inch tall companion sculpture, wearing three feathers on the back of his head. He also has a painted face, a turquoise necklace and hair so long it wraps around the piece. There are three separate representations of Pueblo buildings skillfully carved down the length of the cottonwood root, which also ends in an oval base. The bottoms of both bases are signed. carved into the wood, the marks reading: LONG HAIR FD ARAGON ACOMA NM. On both, the letter G in Aragon has a carved feather suspended from it. Each carvings weighs about 5 ounces.
 
4665 Acoma Long Hair Carvings back of head carving showing feathers-and close up detail on feather carving-1241 x 800.jpg

Unlike katsina dolls, these carvings are fine art, meant to be decorative while conveying Native American traditions. They are both in excellent condition, each having a crack in the base that appears to be natural to the wood slab. These sculptures are a wonderful addition to a collection of Native American art and can also stand alone as modern sculpture.

Note: Price is for the pair, sold as a set.
 
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PYH 4665

Spirit Masks from Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea Carved Wooden Spirit Masks
$950.00


This pair of wooden spirit masks were carved in the Middle Sepik River area of Papua, New Guinea and are referred to as Sepik masks. The men of the tribe carve them of soft woods, then apply decorations with natural pigments and charcoal in ochre and black. The heavily outlined slanted eyes, each covered with a cowry shell, do not have holes to see through. Masks such as these represent the spirits of ancestors and are not meant to be worn on the face. They are hung on the interior and exterior walls of the men's longhouse where ceremonies to please the spirits are performed and boys are initiated to become men. The masks are displayed to ward off evil spirits and to attract powerful ones.

Both masks have pierced septums and arched, elongated noses which reach down to their chins. Their pigmented designs are intricate and beautifully drawn. It is easy to see why the Surrealist artists of the 1920's were so strongly impressed by the indigenous art of Nouvelle-Guinee and how it influenced much of the avant-garde art of the time. These masks, we think, were probably made in the second half of the 20th century. When masks are damaged or no longer usable, they are discarded and new ones carved. Moisture and insects also take their toll, so the masks that survive are ones that were collected or purchased soon after they were made. Papua New Guinea has over 1000 indigenous ethnic groups, many of which sell or trade their arts. 

The masks differ a bit in size; the slightly larger one measures 18 1/2 inches tall and weighs 1 pound 12 ounces, while the smaller one is 17 inches tall and weighs 1 pound 10 ounces. Each has a pair of holes for hanging that pierces the upper edge; one hole on the smaller mask has a chip out of the wood above it and there are a few minor nicks and chips to the wood on both, but they are in excellent overall condition. They are mounted on identical custom metal stands, 4 inches square and painted black. Both masks are intact and unbroken, with the painted motifs still strongly colored. A talented tribesman took great care to carve and decorate these handsome masks to honor his ancestors and they have been well preserved ever since.

>>>This is a greatly informative article concerning how to assess New Guinea art:
http://www.newguineaart.com/png-art.php


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PYH 4640

Mildred Waters Oil Painting | California Artist

Oil Painting by Mildred Waters | Listed California Artist

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  • Vintage item
  • $225.00
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This is a lovely Impressionist oil painting of a California coastal scene by listed artist Mildred Ames Waters (1898-1991). Sand, sea and sky are depicted in soft colors, with houses and a boat-building barn of weathered gray clapboard, a rowboat and a hammock rounding out the picture. The framed size is 18 inches by 16 inches, actual (sight) size of the painting 8 1/4 inches by 7 3/8 inches and it weighs a little over 3 1/2 pounds. 

The wooden frame is 3 1/2 inches wide; it's heavily carved and touched lightly with gilt and has a cream linen liner. This art work has been well kept, with just a few minor nicks to the frame and a bit of age darkening to the liner. There's a hanging wire installed on the reverse, along with a label from an Illinois frame shop that's been around since 1915. We imagine this painting was purchased in California as the memento of a journey there. Mrs. Waters was reputed to have a gallery in Laguna Beach in the 1940's. 

Mildred Ames was born in Maine, married Benjamin Waters around 1926-1927 in Riverside, California and lived in CA until 1979, when she moved to Portland, Oregon to live with her daughter. She passed away there in 1991. Waters is listed in "Artists in California, 1786-1940" by Edan Milton Hughes; "Who Was Who in American Art" by Peter Hastings Falk and "Davenport's Art Reference & Price Guide" by R. J. Davenport. This is an excellent example of Mrs. Waters' skillful painting, as well as an appealing work of 20th century California art. 


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Vintage Shaker Style Bentwood Box

Orleans Carpenters Swing Handle Vintage Shaker Style Bentwood Box
SOLD - $70.00

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  • Vintage item
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Some of the earliest Shaker items sold to the "outside world" were their beautifully made and, more importantly to the Shakers, eminently functional oval boxes. The last Shaker box was made at the Sabbathday Lake, Maine, community in 1955. Since then, a handful of craftsmen have attempted to reproduce these boxes, with varying results. One carpenter's shop that made excellent, authentic copies was Orleans Carpenters of Orleans, Massachusetts.

Orleans Carpenters was started in 1976 by Dick and Phoebe Soule to teach troubled young people a trade. As years went by, the focus shifted entirely to box making. In 1986, Beth and Paul Dixon purchased the business and presented their boxes on their internet site ShakerBoxes.com. The Dixons retired in 2012, having seen their boxes become treasured heirlooms.**

Orleans Carpenters bentwood boxes are faithfully made using the techniques and materials developed by Shaker craftsmen. These include the handsome tapered fingers (sometimes called "swallowtails") which hold the box together while allowing for the expansion and contraction of the bent wood; the copper tacks or pins fastening the fingers; the use of native hardwoods throughout; the oval shape, rather than the more common round one; and the use of a multitude of tiny wooden pins securing the other parts of the box and its lid. The shapely swing handle is attached with a piece of wooden dowel. There are four fingers, one on the lid rim and three on the box. It has a hand rubbed matte oil finish.

The box measures 9 5/8 inches long at the bottom and 9 3/4 inches long with the lid. The box 4 1/2 inches tall and 8 1/2 inches tall to the top of the handle when it's straight up. The width is 7 inches and the weight 14 ounces. It's in pristine condition and has a stamped oval mark on the bottom "ORLEANS CARPENTERS Orleans, MA." This box will become your family's treasured heirloom.

** A partial list of Orleans Carpenters Shaker box owners and vendors:

The King and Queen of Denmark; Oprah Winfrey; Macy's; Harrod's; Georgio Armani, Calvin Klein, and Estee Lauder; QVC for their juried "Quest For America's Best;" The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; a number of Shaker Museums and the Mingei International Museum in San Diego.
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PYH 4674

Arthur Court Hand Signed Statues

Arthur Court Cat Statues 1993

Description
This handsome pair of cat statues was made of hand cut pieces of polished aluminum by Arthur Court (1928-2015), a famed San Francisco designer and the founder of Arthur Court Designs. After intensive research, we have not found any other aluminum pieces by Arthur Court that are constructed in this fashion, the aluminum pieces having been tacked with small brads over what we believe to be a wooden form. These cats are rare and probably one of a kind, hand signed and dated 1993 by Arthur Court personally, instead of being die stamped on the production line. Rather than being sand cast at the factory, these felines were hand made in Mr. Court's own studio. Be sure to note the pleated grooves in the metal that form their whiskers.

The unusual process that Mr. Court used to create these statues gives them a modern, almost brutalist look. One of the cats is 10 3/4 inches tall, the other 11 1/4 inches. They measure 5 1/2 inches front to back at the base and about 5 inches across at the tops of their legs. Each weighs a bit over 2 1/2 pounds; they sit very steadily on any flat surface and both are in wonderful condition.

Arthur Court began his own design studio in SF in 1966, attracting clients such as Shirley Temple Black, the Andrews Sisters and Stanley Marcus of Neiman Marcus. He began working with aluminum in 1976, using the sand casting process to make decorative items like furniture and, beginning in the 1980's, table-top wares made of this popular 'alternative metal.' Many of his designs are still being produced and, according to the 2018 catalog, "hand made by our artisans around the world." 

We are including the 352 page coffee table book "Arthur Court Designs," written by Mr. Court and published in 1999. It pre-owned, retaining its silver bookmark ribbon but not its dust cover. While there is nothing shown in the book like these statues, it is a fascinating glimpse of a man who once graced Playboy Magazine with a two-page spread entitled "Hot Rocks." (Mr. Court was famous for his vast collection of rare minerals, many of which he sold on stands of his own design.) His passion for nature is evident in his creative designs.

The uniqueness and style of these very appealing cats make them decorative gems.



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Item Name
Arthur Court Cat Statues
Price
$895.00
Condition
Vintage
Availability
 In Stock - 1Pair
ID
PYH-4470

Gien Enameled Peonies French Vintage Faience Dish

Gien Enameled Peonies French Vintage Faience Dish

Description
This gorgeous dish is from Faïencerie Gien, established in 1821 in the Loire Valley village of Gien in the heart of France. Faïencerie Gien, out of the numerous potteries founded in the 1800's, is one of the most respected and renowned for their craftsmanship and elegance. The floral decoration on this dish is known as "custome" (custom), traditionally done in shades of pink, purple and a color called parma, a pinkish-violet. The flowers are 'pivoines,' peonies in full bloom and the name of the pattern from Gien's Prestige collection. 

The earthenware used to form the dish was given a pure white glaze and then hand enameled and given ochre trim on the scalloped rim. The underside of the dish bears the stamped three castles mark of Gien, one of many variations they used, this one dating from 1960 to 1971. The words "décoré à la main" are included beneath, translating to 'decorated by hand' and also the artist's initials PG in blue.

Measuring about 8 1/2 inches across and standing about 1 inch high, the dish weighs approximately 14 ounces. It can be hung on the wall, since it has two holes 2 1/4 inches apart drilled in the foot rim but of course it can be as easily used propped up or laying down, too. It's in lovely condition, with a tiny chip on the rim, shown by the arrow in one of our photos. It's shown in the position it would be in if the dish were hanging on the wall. One of the hanging holes on the back has a chip next to it and we've shown that also. All other white spots are reflections from our studio lighting. Vibrant colors, no cracks and no other chips---this piece displays beautifully. 

HELPFUL NOTE: if you'd like to verify the mark on a piece of Gien faience (and those of other makers of faience), this site is extremely thorough and informative:
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PYH 4566



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Item Name
French Faience Dish
Price
$90.00
Condition
Vintage
Availability
 In Stock - 1
ID
PYH-4566

Stoneware Vintage Austrian Plutzer - Hand Made

Vintage Austrian Plutzer Hand Made Stoneware Jug

A type of steinkrug (stone jug) made in Austria, the plutzer has been used since ancient times to keep beverages cool. The high looped handle was useful for carrying the jug filled with "birnenmost" (translated to the English: "perry,"an alcoholic beverage made with pears)---or water---to the fields. The short neck could be plugged with a cork and the small spout enabled the farmer to drink easily from the jug. All of this is explained on the handwritten history accompanying the plutzer, shown in our photos (the printed copy will accompany it when it's shipped).

This plutzer comes from the Villa Comagena, a re-creation of an Austrian farmhouse in Shellsburg, Iowa, owned by Inge Schminke, who fled her hometown of Tulln, Austria, in 1953 during the Russian occupation. Her home is open to the public and there is a gift shop with European goods. She also leads tours to her hometown and Tulln is a short trip from Stoob, famous for its stoneware, especially plutzers. The jug is marked "Handarbeit" ("handwork" in German) on a foil label on one side and there are labels on the bottom reading "MADE IN AUSTRIA" and "Villa Comagena Austria" (the "2104" in the small tag is probably a stock number). Comagena is the name the Romans used for the village of Tulln 2,000 years ago. 

Plutzers are still made, mostly for decorative purposes like this one. It's in like-new condition, handsome with its matte brown glaze. It stands about 7 3/4 inches tall, about 5 1/2 inches across at the belly and weighs 1 pound, 10 ounces. With a fascinating history (not to mention a fun name to say) and a simple, rustic look, this jug works beautifully with many different décors from primitive to modern.

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The story of Ingeborg Schminke and Villa Comagena makes wonderful reading. Here's the link to one article:
http://www.vintonyesterday.org/articles/Et+cetera/article1010946.html

PYH 4469



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Item Name
Austrian Plutzer
Price
$65.00
Condition
Vintage
Availability
 In Stock - 1
ID
PYH-4469

Antique Basket Round Lidded Dyed Splint Native NE American

 Antique Basket Round Lidded Dyed Splint Native NE American

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Plaited, dyed wood splint storage baskets like this one were commonly produced in the Northeastern U.S. from the mid-1800's. This round basket with inset lid, often termed a sewing basket, dates from the late 19th century and is made of brown ash, the so-called "basket tree." The combination of both narrow and wide weft splints narrows the area of origin down to New England, probably from one of the Wabanaki tribes. possibly Penobscot. The dyed splints began as a vivid orange-red; the least faded splints are naturally on the bottom, hidden over the years from the light. As was the custom, the interior splints were not colored, to conserve the valuable dye. The lid, which fits perfectly and removes easily, has a small curved handle wrapped with very narrow splint strips and there are two rows of twined splint encircling the basket. Read More...

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Vintage Asian Hotei Burl Statue

Vintage Asian Hotei Burl Statue

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This large, very heavy statue depicts the smiling, jolly Hotei, one of the Seven Lucky Gods. Hotei, a folklore deity from Taoist-Buddhist traditions, is supposedly based on a Chinese monk named Budai. He carries a branch in his left hand that supports a sack on his back; in the legend, this bag never empties and is filled with food, sweets and rice plants. In his right hand, he carries an alms bowl and a double gourd for water for his travels. He is incredibly detailed, down to the lovely folds in his robe and the tiny beads he wears around his neck. His smiling mouth is not carved on, but carved out. Even his toes have carved toenails.

The "cloud" that Hotei is standing on is a large burl from a cypress tree, complete with a knot hole and age crack. Hotei is, of course, carved from the same piece of burl, but he has been smoothed and buffed, while the base is "au naturel," bumps and all. This statue weighs 9 pounds, 9 ounces and stands 16 inches tall. The bottom measures 7-8 inches from front to back and about 10 inches wide (measurements are approximate because the shape is irregular). There are some scratches in the wood, but no chips and no cracks other than those shown. 

Hotei/Budai statues appear in Chinese, Japanese and Thai temples, so we have designated this simply as an Asian statue. The Hotei statues carved from burls, in particular, were most often carved in Thailand. The burls are 600+ years old and have become very scarce there.

When Hotei is standing, rather than sitting, he symbolizes wealth. One of the popular beliefs about Hotei is that by rubbing him about the head and shoulders can bring good luck and prosperity. The temptation to rub his protruding pot-belly, however is irresistible. Fortunately, that is believed to bring abundance and contentment also. 

© Linda Henrich

PYH 4417

Greg Shooner Redware Dish PA Museum Piece 1985 American Folk Art

Redware Dish PA Museum Piece 1985 American Folk Art by Greg Shooner

There is a story told about famed redware potter Greg Shooner: that his wares are so authentic that they have fooled museum experts. It is appropriate then that Historic Bethlehem Museum in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, commissioned Greg Shooner to make this 8 1/2 inch dish, based on shards found there. The sgraffito designs include a saltbox house like those in Historic Bethlehem, a Pennsylvania "Dutch" tulip and a dashed-line rim. 

The information on the back of the dish is hand inscribed by Greg Shooner and states: "From archaelogical {sic} shards from Bethlehem Pa. Commissioned by Historic Bethlehem Museum Piece 1985 (signed) Greg Shooner" Stamped into the center of the date is "TURTLECREEK POTTERY," which is now titled The Workshops of David T. Smith, located in Morrow, Ohio. Greg met his wife Mary Spellmire there; she is also a noted potter and partner in Shooner American Redware, located in Oregonia, Ohio. David Smith encouraged them to start their own pottery business. It opened in 1993 and the rest is history. 

This red clay dish is about 1 1/2 inches high and weighs 1 pound, 6 ounces. It's lead glazed and purposely distressed, including chips and dings, to give it a realistic time-worn look. Otherwise in great condition, it is perfect for the antiques lover, folk art collector and those restoring/decorating old houses.

© Linda Henrich

PYH 4430


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