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Other Plateau/Intermontane Cultures

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Diné (Navajo) Artist

Wedding Basket, c. 1910
Grass and leaf
3 1/2 x 14 7/8 x 14 7/8 in. (8.89 x 37.78 x 37.78 cm)

Creation Place: North America, Native American, Arizona
Technique: Basketmaking (Coiling)
Credit Line: Gift of Dr. E. H. Parker
Accession Number: P3119
Hemispherical wedding basket with flat bottom. Coiled construction. Bands of black triangles and brown on buff.

Sumac and yucca leaf

Published in Pomona Today, Spring 1985, p.3, "Native American and European World Views."
Kay Koeninger and Joanne M. Mack, "Native American Art from the Permanent Collection" (Claremont: Galleries of the Claremont Colleges, 1979), 41-42 (illustrated/bw 41) fig. 108.

The "Navajo wedding basket" is used in many Navajo ceremonies to hold sacred pollen or corn meal. The triangular designs represent the hills and valleys of the world and the underworld. The break in the pattern is called shipapu, a word denoting the means of communication between the two worlds. The shaman always uses the basket so that the shipapu faces away from him, aided by the fact that it is indicated by the last wrapping stitches on the basket rim.

Dr. E. H. Parker Collection.

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  • Overall Dimensions: 3 1/2 x 14 7/8 x 14 7/8 in. (8.89 x 37.78 x 37.78 cm) Measured by Hudson, Karen

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