rectangular pouch with long fringe, partially covered in quills trimmed with blue beads; body decorated with horses on red ground- purple horse on front, white and blue horse on back; beaded detail at top edge

Pipe Bag, late 19th century

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Among the Lakota, quillwork was a sacred art form because of its connections with Double Woman, a complex figure in oral tradition. Since this technique was wakan (holy), membership in quillwork societies was restricted to highly respected women and to those who had visionary experiences related to the supernatural being. This bag skillfully presents a central theme in Plains art, horses. Horses were important in all Plains cultures because they provided the mobility necessary to maintain their way of life. The artist depicted these animals in motion, giving both movement and vitality to her subject. She contrasted these images with vibrant geometric patterns that add more color to this brilliant piece. Stunning hues and evocative design make this a masterpiece of Lakota quillwork.

Details
Title
Pipe Bag
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2004.27.2
Curator Approved

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rectangular pouch with long fringe, partially covered in quills trimmed with blue beads; body decorated with horses on red ground- purple horse on front, white and blue horse on back; beaded detail at top edge