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Objects

With more than two million objects in the Maxwell Museum collections, there a lot of stories to tell.  Learn some of them here.

Tanga (plaster cast) (MMA 42.1.1)

Tanga: plaster cast from the National Museum of Brazo; (MMA 42.1.1)

Object Monday: Marajoara Tanga

Posted on: Monday, September 13, 2021 - 8:30am

This plaster replica of a tanga,or woman’s pubic cover, was donated to the Maxwell Museum in 1942 by Heloisa Alberto Torres, Director of the National Museum of Brazil from 1937 to 1955. Alberto Torres is known for her archaeological research on... read more

Nuchu (MMA 2017.34.83)

Nuchu (MMA 2017.34.83)

Object Monday: Guna Nuchu

Posted on: Monday, September 6, 2021 - 6:00am

Created by master carvers, Nuchukana (plural; singular nuchu), small wooden human figures, are found in homes across the Guna territories of northeast coastal Panama. When not in use in curing ceremonies, the nuchukana help protect the household’... read more

Tunga Bark Container (MMA 2004.34.3)

Tunga bark container by Rhonda Kompoo (MMA 2004.34.3)

Object Monday: Tunga Bark Container

Posted on: Monday, August 16, 2021 - 12:45pm

This bark container (called a tunga), was made by Aboriginal Australian artist Rhondo Kompoo. It is made of folded eucalyptus bark and vegetal fiber, painted with natural pigments in yellow, black, red, and white.

Traditionally, Tiwi... read more

San Isidro Labrador (MMA 94.141.1)

San Isidro Labrador (MMA 94.141.1)

Object Monday: San Isidro Labrador

Posted on: Monday, August 2, 2021 - 8:30am

This carving in aspen wood depicts the figure San Isidro Labrador on a wooden base behind a plow with two oxen. He iholds a wooden bucket with leather straps draped over his right arm. The figure is unpainted. It was made by the carver George... read more

Effigy vessel by Elmer Gates (MMA 2021.17.1)

Effigy vessel by Elmer Gates (MMA 2021.17.1)

Object Monday: Elmer Gates Effigy Vessel

Posted on: Monday, July 26, 2021 - 5:45am

This human effigy jar was created by Mojave (Mohave) potter Elmer Gates (1929-1990). The seated figure balancing a ceramic bowl on its head, is made of micaceous clay. Its face and body are adorned with red painted designs, complemented by blue... read more

Tree of Life Weaving by Margaret Bochinclozy

Tree of Life Weaving by Margaret Bochinclozy (MMA 63.34.172)

Object Monday: Tree of Life Weaving by Margaret Bochinclozy

Posted on: Tuesday, July 20, 2021 - 3:15pm

This pictorial weaving was made by Diné weaver Margaret Bochinclozy in 1962. The rug depicts a tree of life motif, surrounded by a border of animals, a rainbow, and stars. A light green corn stalk-like tree climbs up the center of the textile on... read more

Wide Ruins weaving (MMA 69.67.35)

Wide Ruins weaving by Emma K. Joe (MMA 69.67.35)

Object Monday: Wide Ruins Weaving

Posted on: Monday, July 12, 2021 - 9:00am

Emma K. Joe wove this rug in the 1960s. The Wide Ruins style is characterized by complex and detailed weaving techniques that create bold and large designs. Wide Ruins weavings are generally made with vegetal-dyed, fine handspun wool yarn in... read more

Squash Blossom Necklace (MMA 77.49.66)

Squash blossom necklace by A:shiwi (Zuni) artist Josephine Buqua (MMA 77.49.66)

Object Monday: Squash Blossom Necklace

Posted on: Monday, July 5, 2021 - 12:30pm

This silver and turquoise necklace is known as a “Squash Blossom Necklace,” an iconic style of jewelry made by Native American artisans in the US Southwest. This piece features fourteen silver “squash blossom” beads, each set with four oval... read more

Pendant, Vidal Aragon (MMA 73.15.3)

Pendant, Vidal Aragon (MMA 73.15.3)

Object Monday: Vidal Aragon necklace

Posted on: Monday, June 28, 2021 - 9:45am

This necklace was made by Kewa artist Vidal Aragon (1923-2015). It features a round silver pendant with one oval turquoise stone and five different kinds of animal tracks.

Vidal... read more

Bolo tie clasp by Oliver Cellicion

Thunderbird bolo tie clasp by A;shiwi artist Oliver Cellicion

Object Monday: Oliver Cellicion bolo tie

Posted on: Monday, June 21, 2021 - 8:30am

This bolo tie with a thunderbird design was made by A:shiwi artist Oliver Cellicion (1913-1996). The thunderbird slide features silver channel inlay with jet, shell, and turquoise. Channel inlay is closely associated with Southwest Native... read more

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