We are pleased to announce a special group of Native American beaded objects from a Santa Fe collection. All of the pieces in this collection date from the late 19th and early 20th century, and mark a transitional period from items of personal use to beaded items made for sale. Some items are ethnographic, such as the strike-a-light bag made to carry flint, but the stars of this collection are the handbags, which are completely beaded in intricate Central Plains beadwork.
In a time of upheaval and uncertainty, Native artists of the Plains improvised with traditional techniques and innovative materials to create portable masterpieces that celebrated traditional arts as well as appealing to a wider audience. This collection has examples of quillwork, Chippewa Ojibwe floral scrollwork, and traditional Lakota geometric as well as pictorial beadwork.