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PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2004 9:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2003 9:06 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Alaska, USA
John,

Thanks for the great photos of baskets. I too have an attraction to fine basketry and enjoy the feel and look of a well used basket. Most of my basket collection is from Laos and I have not been able to find many resources pertaining to this subject.

Have you seen Inupiat Eskimo baskets from the Barrow, Pt. Hope, Wainwright area. They are made of baleen from the bowhead whale that is harvested by the people of the region for subsistence. Many have ivory handles. They are absolutely beautiful. Although they are a recent addition to the arts and crafts skills of the indigenous people , they are gaining popularity and are increasingly sought after by collecters. They are primarily made for the tourist trade. A typical basket will run between $800-$1200. Ouch! A great place to purchase one and many other crafts would be at the arts craft show of AFN conference, (Alaska Federation of Natives). I heard it may be held in Fairbanks this fall after many years in Anchorage. It is a great experience, thousands of Native Alaskans come from villages throughout the state to participate in dancing, singing, political and business forums etc. Or better yet travel to the bush and experience the villiages first hand. It is probably hard for most to comprehend that Natives villiages in Alaska still live a primarily subsistence lifestyle. Hunting and gathering is still practiced and necessary for survival. Many if not most villiages, english is a second language and many elders only speak in the Native tounge.

I have been out of circulation with the forum and still have alot of catching up to do on the forum. Busy as usual in the summer, work, subsitence fishing and family but hope to become more involved.

I have included a couple of baskets collected in Northern Laos.

Rusty


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DSC00364.JPG
DSC00364.JPG [ 15.06 KiB | Viewed 6675 times ]
DSC00355.JPG
DSC00355.JPG [ 15.17 KiB | Viewed 6675 times ]

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 Post subject: posting photos now OK
PostPosted: Tue Jun 15, 2004 6:01 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2003 1:42 pm
Posts: 1989
Location: Canterbury, UK
Just to alert everyone to the fact that the ftp function for loading photos to the forum is now working as our ISP must have 'fixed' things.

Some lovely 'mature' baskets, Rusty. Another texile lover who is attracted to baskets - excellent!

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http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 15, 2004 8:45 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 7:35 pm
Posts: 176
Location: east coast
Thanks for the postings Rusty. - the last tri-set basket from Laos is gorgeous. You want to rub the patina. About how old is it?

I have a couple of baleen baskets I bought about 15 years ago or so. One from a dealer in Seattle Washington, and another at a local auction near Boston. I am posting them for any interest. If you can find an excellent baleen for $800-1000, I'd say - buy it.

They show up on eBay from time to time and the really good ones are pricey as usual.

Keep the baskets coming - I love them.

-John


rusty wrote:
John,

Thanks for the great photos of baskets. I too have an attraction to fine basketry and enjoy the feel and look of a well used basket. Most of my basket collection is from Laos and I have not been able to find many resources pertaining to this subject.

Have you seen Inupiat Eskimo baskets from the Barrow, Pt. Hope, Wainwright area. They are made of baleen from the bowhead whale that is harvested by the people of the region for subsistence. Many have ivory handles. They are absolutely beautiful. Although they are a recent addition to the arts and crafts skills of the indigenous people , they are gaining popularity and are increasingly sought after by collecters. They are primarily made for the tourist trade. A typical basket will run between $800-$1200. Ouch! A great place to purchase one and many other crafts would be at the arts craft show of AFN conference, (Alaska Federation of Natives). I heard it may be held in Fairbanks this fall after many years in Anchorage. It is a great experience, thousands of Native Alaskans come from villages throughout the state to participate in dancing, singing, political and business forums etc. Or better yet travel to the bush and experience the villiages first hand. It is probably hard for most to comprehend that Natives villiages in Alaska still live a primarily subsistence lifestyle. Hunting and gathering is still practiced and necessary for survival. Many if not most villiages, english is a second language and many elders only speak in the Native tounge.

I have been out of circulation with the forum and still have alot of catching up to do on the forum. Busy as usual in the summer, work, subsitence fishing and family but hope to become more involved.

I have included a couple of baskets collected in Northern Laos.

Rusty


Attachments:
File comment: Coiled baleen basket. Purchased about 20 years ago.

about 4" high x 2.5" to top of finial

baleen1.jpg
baleen1.jpg [ 37.42 KiB | Viewed 6662 times ]
File comment: coiled baleen basket. Purchased about 15 years ago.

about 5inches across and three high to top of ivory finial

baleen2.jpg
baleen2.jpg [ 40.71 KiB | Viewed 6662 times ]

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 Post subject: Baskets
PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 8:25 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2003 9:06 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Alaska, USA
John,

Thanks for the photos of your baleen baskets. I had a gut feeling that you had one and also wanted to share with the forum a seldom seen form of baskets from alaska. An interesting Aleut jacket from Alaska is a seal gut rain parka. It is sewed with sinew and said to be very durable and waterproof. Traditionally worn while kayaking. I have been looking for one and kick myself for passing one up at an auction years ago. Does anyone in the forum have any Alaskan textiles/garmets they would like to share with us? Tlingit blankets, mukluks, parka?

The backpack/tri set basket pictured is probably about 50-80? years old guageing it by the patina on the wood frame. It also has plenty of soft cornes as it has been used quite extensively. Do you have any pointers that would help me age it? As I mentioned before resources are difficult on this subject for this region.

I have also attatched a basket from the Muang Sing area of Northern Laos. I was told it was used to carry food to the field. Do you have any thoughts? Probably 10-20 yars old? I hope Pamela does not lift our passwords for straying off the subject matter?

Rusty


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 12:31 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2003 1:42 pm
Posts: 1989
Location: Canterbury, UK
Rusty,

I am not going to pull the plug on you both......yet!!!

Although forum members have currently been brought together by a love of Asian textiles - especially those of southeast asia - I think that most of us have fairly catholic tastes which include a wider material culture and finds interest in comparisons with 'tribal' cultures in other parts of the world. I hope that someone does have an Aleut seal gut coat they can share with us as that I would love to see.

I have a preference for a reasonably organised presentation of items - not too butterfly - but appreciate that often 'one thing leads to another'. Lets see how it goes. I might want to start a new forum within the board which focuses say, on baskets, but at the moment am happy for postings to continue under 'general' - which has become much more so recently!!

I am finding that I am learning such a lot and am personally enjoying the breadth. Hope that others are also and if it does not quite touch a particular member's interest do bear with us - and post some items of your own to get us talking about things that move you.

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http://www.tribaltextiles.info
on-line tribal textiles resource


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 20, 2004 8:19 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 12:27 am
Posts: 124
Location: Los Angeles, CA
I have a couple of backpacks very similar to the one pictured. I found mine in Attapeu Province in Laos. It was represented to be from the Khamu. Is this piece the one you age at 50-80 years because of the presence of wood. Mine have no wood. One of mine came with a skin covered quiver. Very, very nice pieces. As far as I know it is difficult to age baskets, unless the group changed styles. On the other hand it is easier to tell a new one.

Bill Hornaday


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