Monday, September 12, 2011
Wooden bear paper mache mold
One of the real, old, paper mache molds from the village of Paete in the Philippines. This is one of the real ones with obvious cut marks in the wood where the different pieces of the paper mache figure were cut from the mold. And, as a teddy bear, he has lots of personality.
Old figural ceramic duck pitcher from Oaxaca Mexico. This is the lovely dripware glaze that was a specialty for artists in the Oaxaca area. The duck is in very good old condition with only very light wear. No notable dings, chips or cracks.
Old pawn silver and turquoise ring
A simple, classic, 1930s old pawn, early Harvey era ring. As expected, the natural turquoise has darkened, leaving a few bright blue spots of harder turquoise. Lots of appropriate wear – the bezel is worn and the arrow stamps on the side of the split shank are nearly worn off.
Classic tramp art box
Just a great tramp art box. About the size of the cigar box that the pieces came from, the folk artist layered pieces to create additional designs on all sides and the top of the box. Probably made as a jewelry box, it is lined with purple satin. Other than the expected wear, mostly to the satin, the box has no problems, just the irregularities of handmade things. The lid is decorated with four squares – the top two set as diamonds, the bottom two as squares. You can see that the bottom right square sat at the wrong angle for awhile so the patina reflects it’s change of position – there’s a diamond-shaped shadow.
Large old Navajo pitched water jar
Hard to find in the larger, utilitarian sizes, this jar measures about 12″ tall by about 9″ wide. The basket was made with braided horsehair handles woven in and then the basket was coated and sealed with pine pitch. An old piece, I think it has gotten hot various times over the years and the pitch is a bit gloppy and puddling around the base. Normal enough for this area – our adobe walls get thicker at the base over time as the adobe settles. Speaking of which, see another great southwestern item that we have for sale, an original New Mexican adobe brick mold.
Miniature Jemez Pueblo house by Lupe Romero
This is a great piece by a Native American potter from Jemez Pueblo in New Mexico. In the 1970s, Lupe would recreate an existing house at Jemez Pueblo, in miniature. This is approximately 7″ x 8″ x 8″. The detail is terrific – you can see the little corner fireplace inside on the second floor, the staircase from the front porch comes out on the lower roof, the horno has its bread paddle and Lupe even put little footprints into the dark brown “dirt” in front of the horno.
1960s Swan mosaic table
A wonderful little table, with two mosaic swans made of small pieces of glass (tesserae) set into grout. Beautiful and in very good vintage condition. No missing glass pieces, just expected dings and wear to the wood. The screw on legs are a bit skittywhompus at present but it stands sturdily. 17″ tall x 19″ x 22″ across the top.
Victorian silver & paste brooch
A dainty, detailed little brooch, .800 silver set with 5 small paste or glass stones. As there is only one stone that is a domed cabochon (the turquoise color), assume that one is replaced. But, the turquoise color works well overall. The brooch measures approximately 1 3/8″ wide. The simple C clasp and pin works well.
Banded agate turtle brooch
A simply designed elegant turtle brooch, a banded agate cabochon set on sterling silver. Head to tail, he measures 1 7/8″ long and his rolling clasp works well.
Inlaid jet cuff bracelet by Navajo artist Mary Morgan
A clean, geometrically patterned heavy sterling silver cuff set with Acoma jet by Navajo artist Mary Morgan. This is typical of Mary’s earlier pieces from the 1960s or 1970s. Her later work is more traditional Navajo in design but her older pieces are substantial silver work that that highlight the stones and inlay. This is signed with her simple M mark.
Victorian Zootropion, Praxinoscope or Whirligig of Life
Labeled as a Whirligig of Life, this is a praxinoscope or zootropion. Functional, even with 9 strips. Sitting on a surface, it looks just slightly off kilter but it spins well and views wonderfully. Note that the strips are worn with tattered edges and some tape repair but all are basically intact and view well. Rare!
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Welcome to Old Town Antiques
Old Acoma olla with creative Native repair. This is a 1930s olla.
Once badly broken, a lady at Jemez repaired this in a most creative fashion. She used leather strips to reinforce the breaks and losses, left the leather with its original color around the rim of the olla (neatly complementing the red underbody of the pot) but she painted the leather in the design areas to match the original design. An unusual but effective fix and the pot is both attractive and interesting. 8” tall x just under 9” wide.
Circa 1920s Navajo or Paiute Basket
A very old Navajo basket. This one is unusual as it was not made in the more common “wedding” ceremonial basket design. Someone called this “The Walking Sun” design. The basket measures between 10” x 11” across and about 2 ½” deep. Although faded, the patina is great and the basket still structurally sound, just a little dry.
Circa 1890, this is a painted enamel on copper plaque by an Asian artist, based on the Baroque painting “The Swing” by Fraggonard. Note the pig-tailed gentleman in the lower right corner holding the rope, replacing the European man in the original painting. The plaque is in terrific condition for its age. It measures 8 ¾” x 4 ½”.
Sterling & 14 kt gold overlay (not a light electroplate). Arland is known for his carefully detailed work and this piece is from his respected “Petroglyph” series and this is an unusually wide bracelet. Fully marked (and patterned) inside the bracelet.
This is a medium size and easily fits a 6 ½” wrist.
An original oil painting of the Crucifixion, on canvas adhered to thick paper board. Beautifully painted, the artist was professional. I can’t quite make out the name but the signature includes the Italian region’s name “Gazizia.” The painting measures 27 ¼” x 17 ½.”.
Tohono O odham (Papago) basket
A small, well-woven tourist basket made by the Tohono O odham. The figure woven in is either an owl or a bat – either is an anomaly in Native American representation as both are night creatures and were not easily or commonly depicted. 4” in diameter and is in excellent condition.
1930s or 1940s Acoma olla
Simple, geometric and striking unsigned Acoma olla. Part of its charm, this has the slightly crooked shape of a hand-coiled pot. Typical of old Acoma pieces, the finish has “pops” in the slip on the surface. It measures approximately 8 ½” in both height and diameter.
Circa 1900, perhaps made as a memento of graduation. If you look closely, in each photo, the girl is wearing man’s clothing and the man is wearing old-fashioned women’s clothing. The logos were all carefully cut out and are from hotels, ships, cities and countries – maybe expressing a wish to travel. 8” x 18 ¼” framed.
19th century Silver Cigarrito
An early 19th century repousse silver cigarette or small cigar box. I believe this to be from Mexico as I did find an article in an old Artes magazine that featured a gold “cigarrito” box, similar in every respect except in gold. The repousse decoration is naïve, detailed and charming. The box has a very old mark that shows a lion and what looks like “DENART, 925.”
Vintage Mexican amethyst key ring
The larger side is one of the Aztec themed carved faces. The pointed amethyst tip unscrews to allow keys to be added or removed. In good used condition.
Arts & Crafts Niloak vase
The vase is unsigned but probably Niloak. 6” tall x just under 4 ½” across the top. In very good antique condition.
Luster transfer ware platter by Brownfield & Sons
A gorgeous ivory ware platter with orange luster accents. This is “Cyprus” by Brownfield & Sons, England. This is Arts & Crafts period, between 1870 and the mid 1890s. 14 1/8” x 17 3/8,” in excellent condition.
Early 19th century Bolivian coca pouch
This is a ch’uspa (in the Aymara language). This pouch woven of alpaca and vicuna fibers, made to hold coca leaves and other important items. A wonderful textile, the colors are natural, the warm brown is vicuna, the red is cochineal and the dark blue, indigo. The tufts at the opening are symbolic “ears” – a reference to the camelids that clothed and fed the Andean community that produced this piece. Even at nearly 200 years old, the cloth is still pliable and soft to the touch. A lovely historic piece. 8” x 9” at the bottom, 7 ½” at the “ears.”
19th century faux grain chest
We don’t see many faux grain painted blanket chests in the Southwest but this one showed up. The apparent drawers are blind – the lid lifts to reveal the main compartment and a small cubby with a lid mounted inside. The chest has old transfers (nautical on the lid and floral on the “drawers”). There is old bug damage to the feet and the lower section but no live bugs now and it is sturdy and useable. 34 1/2” x 50 x 25 ½”
Austro-Hungarian silver & turquoise snake brooch
A wonderful Revival piece, a snake coiled into a figure 8 with a tail curl, hand-tooled to create his scales, holding a pendant with four small turquoise stones in his mouth. Old “C” hook clasp. I don’t know if the pendant is original to the brooch but it fits. Unmarked but I’ll guarantee this to be .800 silver or better. Tail to drop, just under 1 ¾,” just over 1 ½” wide. He’s great!
Old Sacred Heart medal
An old copper and/or brass medal from Mexico. It reads “NE Aqui El Corazon Que Ha Tanto Amado A Los Hombres.”
The other side reads “Dulce Corazon de Jesus A Quien Yo Espero Amar Toda La Vida.”
1 3/8” in diameter. Even with the corrosion, a lovely, used piece.