Harpooner's Hat

Harpooner's Hat

1794
Culture
Nuu-chah-nulth
hat
plant fiber
Native Arts acquisition funds
1952.607

Nuu-chah-nulth artist, Harpooner’s Hat, 1794. Spruce root and bear grass; 10 3/8 x 9 ½ in. Denver Art Museum: Native Arts acquisition funds, 1952.607

Dimensions
height: 10.375 in, 26.3525 cm; diameter: 9.5 in, 24.1300 cm
Department
Native Arts
Collection
Indigenous Arts of North America
Whale hunting was a very important activity among the Nuu-chah-nulth peoples of Vancouver Island. A highly accomplished basketry artist intertwined strands of plant fiber to portray the pictorial hunting scenes on the sloping sides of this hat. Look closely to see how she created whales being chased by men in large canoes throwing their harpoons.
Known Provenance
Collected by Captain James Magee, from Nootka Sound in the Northwest Coast, in 1794. Massachusetts Historical Society; Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Cambridge, MA, before 1952; Denver Art Museum, 1952.