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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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 Aragon was... 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

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

Earrings by Washngton Talayumptewa (MMA 63.32.18)

Earrings by Washngton Talayumptewa (MMA 63.32.18)

Object Monday: Washington Talayumptewa earrings

Posted on: Sunday, June 13, 2021

These cottonwood, turquoise, and mother of pearl or abalone earrings were made by Washington Talayumptewa, a noted Hopi jeweler who was principally known for his silverwork. Turquoise and shell were attached to the wooden base with pine pitch or... read more

Cat Storyteller (MMA 2013.103.34)

Cat Storyteller by Emily Fragua Tsosie (MMA 2013.103.34)

Object Monday: Cat Story Teller

Posted on: Monday, June 7, 2021

Happy International Museum Week, June 7-14, 2021! This year's theme is Creativity!  What better way to join the celebration with the 60,000 museums around the world celebrating this week than with a storyteller?  

This polychrome ceramic... read more