Native American, North America, Western United States, ca. late 19th to early 20th century CE. A massive skull from an American bison (Bison bison), also known as an American buffalo, the most iconic animal of the American West! The large teeth from the upper jaw are well preserved, and the bone has beautifully lightened to a sun-bleached white, while the dark brown horns curve up and slightly inward. The skull is painted with pigments in red and black with star and sun symbols and circular motifs. These geometric motifs were likely painted by Native Americans of the western plains. Bison were an invaluable animal for many tribes and were used for food, medicine, tools, and clothing. These majestic animals embody the "Old West" and are integral to many traditional ways of life and religious beliefs. In fact, the oldest painted object ever discovered in North America was a bison skull. This skull would be an amazing display piece! Size: 22" L x 25" W x 11" H (55.9 cm x 63.5 cm x 27.9 cm)
This piece has been searched against the Art Loss Register database and has been cleared. The Art Loss Register maintains the world’s largest database of stolen art, collectibles, and antiques.
Provenance: private Glorieta, New Mexico, USA collection
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The horn cores shrunk over time, the horn caps slide off freely. Natural ossification of the bones. Stable fissures. Interior bones are flaking with quite thin. Teeth are slightly loose. Some fading of pigments. Large size!