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Press Release - November 5, 2014
San Ildefonso Polychrome Plate May Bring $20,000+ At Heritage AuctionsRare Pre-Columbian Gold Shark (est. $10,000+) offered Nov. 14 in Dallas
"The work of Maria Martinez and Popovi Da is the most sought after of all San Ildefonso pottery," said Delia E. Sullivan, Director of American Indian Art at Heritage. "That this plate is a polychrome example, rather than the usual black-on-black, sends the value soaring. It’s really something quite special. Like this plate, the fall auction is filled with finds that stand out for their artistic merit as well as for their historical interest."
The auction holds fine American Indian art objects from every corner of North America. A brilliant Sioux Beaded Hide Dress, circa 1900 (est. $6,000+), fashioned from two skins and embellished with glass beads, is offered with provenance relating to a noteworthy Winnebago Appliqued Ribbon-work Outfit (est. $1,500+). The current owner's step-mother danced in the Winnebago outfit at the Wisconsin Dells, while the Sioux dress was owned by an elder member of the family. A stunning Acoma Polychrome Jar, circa 1890, has provenance from the collection of Earl and Ann Morris, who were early anthropologists in the Southwest (est. $5,000+). A beautifully-composed Alaskan Eskimo Carved Wood Mask, probably from King Island (est. $1,000+), is also on offer.
An exceptional Pre-Columbian Shark Pendant/Brooch, circa 600-1100 AD (est. $10,000+) was cast in solid gold using the ancient lost wax process. The realistic and fine shark form — quite rare among Pre-Columbian gold figures — highlights a gold collection that also includes a Prancing Canine; a Composite Creature, each circa 400-1100 AD; and a large Veraguas Standing Figure, circa 900-1100 AD (all est. $5,000+ each). Among the Pre-Columbian pottery, an Expressive Maya Stucco Head, circa 600-800 AD (est. $8,000+), is a stand out.
A rare Tsaaye fiber screen, circa 19th century to early 20th century (est. $10,000+), highlights the auction's selection of Tribal Art. The screen, from the Teke people of the Democratic Republic of Congo is finely woven of cane and raffia. A collection of exceptionally sculpted objects include a Salampasu Mask from the early 20th century (est. $4,000+) as well as expertly crafted hats, one a Montolo Hat, worn by revered leaders of the Ekonda people (est. $3,000+) and another, a Bwami Society Hat from the Lega (est. $1,500+).
A selection of carved clubs and ceremonial objects from indigenous Pacific Island peoples are offered. A group of Fijian clubs with rich brown patina include a Bilibuli Hard Wood Club (est. $4,000+) and a Vunikau Root Stock Club (est. $2,000+). A rare Janus Grade Figure from Vanuatu's Ambrym Island (est. $7,000+) and a Sugue Society Grade Figure from Banks Island (est. $7,000+), fashioned from carved fern and standing at about five feet each, would be an impressive addition to any collection.
Additional highlights include, but are not limited by:
A Chinesco Female Figure, c. 200 BC — 200 AD (est. $7,000+).
Gathering Clouds, a bronze by Allan C. Houser (est. $5,000+).
An Apache Coiled Storage Jar, c. 1900 (est. $5,000+).
A Navajo Wearing Blanket, Third Phase Chief's Pattern. c. 1900, (est. $5,000+).
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