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Headdress

Object Number:NA8505
Current Location: Collections Storage
Culture:Tlingit
Provenience: United States of America
Alaska
Sitka
Culture Area: Northwest Coast Culture Area
Section:American
Materials:Wood
Pigment
Ermine
Feather
Wool
Cotton
Whisker
Width: 47 cm
Credit Line:Wanamaker Expedition to the Northwest Coast; Louis Shotridge, 1918

Description

Headdress or frontlet entitled "Sea Lion on a Rock" or "Shakiat" in Tlingit. The carved wood depicts one large animal and two smaller animal heads between the legs of the larger animal which are carved in high relief. Green paint is used for the faces and the background of the carving while red and black paints detail the animal faces and limbs. Abalone shell inlay is used for the teeth of each animal head and there are recesses along the faces, limbs, and around the perimeter where abalone shell was once inlaid but is now missing. Copper plates are used to cover the nostrils of the larger animal's face. Flanking the carving, an ermine pelt is attached on either side and oriented with its head pointed downward. Red felt is attached to the upper and lower edges of the carving. The top of the headdress is lined with sea lion whiskers. Below the whiskers on the top and back of the headdress, orange and black flicker feathers are attached. Below those feathers is a section of white down feathers along the back. Finally, below the down feathers, a long train of animal hide is attached. The carving is set over a hide cap covered with iridescent, mallard duck feathers.

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