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Other Cultures

Ethnographic and indigenous artifacts appeal to collectors for a variety of reasons. Many associate the craft associated with these objects, which hearkens back to a time when people made exquisite objects using rudimentary tools. These artifacts, which include hunting and fishing implements, toys, ceremonial costumes, and statues, as well as arts and crafts, often required immense time and labor.

Indigenous objects offer a fascinating window into cultures that existed long before the advent of modern conveniences. The objects of their quotidian lives, from cutlery and vessels to art objects, were fashioned without the aid of electricity or advanced technologies. Furthermore, these artifacts, whether from Africa, the Americas, or Europe, showcase an aesthetic that is perennially appealing and unlike anything produced today.

The enduring allure of indigenous artifacts is evident in their contribution to the evolution of modern art, as early modernists such as Pablo Picasso and contemporary artists such as Martin Puryear incorporated aesthetic aspects of disparate traditions into their work.


Quick Facts

  • The Laplander tribes of Scandinavia produced handicrafts made from wood, bone, and antlers that are valued by collectors throughout the world for their restrained beauty
  • In 2013, Sotheby's sold a collection of Navajo blankets that brought in nearly one million dollars
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City has tens of thousands of ethnographic and indigenous artifacts from cultures around the world

Recommended Items at Auction

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Large Antique Armenian Embroidered Silk Cope w. Silver Clamps
Apr 17, 10:00 AM EDT
Large Antique Armenian Embroidered Silk Cope w. Silver Clamps
by Material Culture
Est: $300- $500
$90016 Bids
Beau Dick, 2 1/4 x 8 x 4 5/8 in. (5.7 x 20.3 x 11.7 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
Beau Dick, 2 1/4 x 8 x 4 5/8 in. (5.7 x 20.3 x 11.7 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$4,80014 Bids
A set of Nuu-chah-nulth basketry covered antlers. 12 in. (30.5 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
A set of Nuu-chah-nulth basketry covered antlers. 12 in. (30.5 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $400- $600
$1,90013 Bids
Ceremonial Eskimo Osik Club Polar Bear
May 18, 10:00 AM EDT
Ceremonial Eskimo Osik Club Polar Bear
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$2009 Bids
EARLY 20TH C ARABIAN KASHKUL BEGGARS BOWL
Apr 20, 10:00 AM EDT
EARLY 20TH C ARABIAN KASHKUL BEGGARS BOWL
by Antique Arena Inc
Est: $100- $150
$3759 Bids
19th Century, Ottoman, A presentation yatagan
Apr 18, 10:00 AM BST
19th Century, Ottoman, A presentation yatagan
by Sloane Street Auctions
Est: £200- £400
£1808 Bids
Eskimo Engraved Shamans Harpoon
May 18, 10:00 AM EDT
Eskimo Engraved Shamans Harpoon
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$2507 Bids
A Northwest Coast halibut hook, 10 x 5 x 2 in. (25.4 x 12.7 x 5.1 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
A Northwest Coast halibut hook, 10 x 5 x 2 in. (25.4 x 12.7 x 5.1 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $200- $300
$2807 Bids
Northwest Coast Wooden Headdress
May 18, 10:00 AM EDT
Northwest Coast Wooden Headdress
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1756 Bids
TAINO PRECOLUMBIAN MANATEE VOMIT SPATULA
Apr 23, 9:00 AM EDT
TAINO PRECOLUMBIAN MANATEE VOMIT SPATULA
by Affiliated Auctions & Realty LLC
Est: $100- $200
$1306 Bids
A collection of Northwest Coast wood carvings, Rotating stick: 17 in. (43.2 cm.) l.
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
A collection of Northwest Coast wood carvings, Rotating stick: 17 in. (43.2 cm.) l.
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $200- $300
$2604 Bids
Eskimo Club
May 18, 10:00 AM EDT
Eskimo Club
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$804 Bids
A Haida carved and polychromed model canoe, 5 3/4 x 22 1/4 x 5 5/8 in. (14.6 x 56.5 x 14.3 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
A Haida carved and polychromed model canoe, 5 3/4 x 22 1/4 x 5 5/8 in. (14.6 x 56.5 x 14.3 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $700- $900
$7504 Bids
A small Qajar coco-de-mer begging bowl (kashkul) and an engraved brass inkwell
Apr 26, 10:00 AM BST
A small Qajar coco-de-mer begging bowl (kashkul) and an engraved brass inkwell
by Roseberys
Est: £200- £400
£1404 Bids
Fine Antique Pacific Northwest Coast Horn Spoon
Apr 20, 11:00 AM EDT
Fine Antique Pacific Northwest Coast Horn Spoon
by Kavanagh Auctions
Est: $40- $15,000
$1204 Bids
Turkmen Gilt Silver Yomut Gulyaka Pendant and Koran Holder
Apr 17, 10:00 AM EDT
Turkmen Gilt Silver Yomut Gulyaka Pendant and Koran Holder
by Material Culture
Est: $100- $200
$1754 Bids
Betty Joe, a carved and polychromed Ghost mask, 8 1/2 x 9 3/4 x 5 in. (21.6 x 24.8 x 12.7 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
Betty Joe, a carved and polychromed Ghost mask, 8 1/2 x 9 3/4 x 5 in. (21.6 x 24.8 x 12.7 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $100- $150
$1404 Bids
Ivory Engraved Eskimo Shamans Cup
May 18, 10:00 AM EDT
Ivory Engraved Eskimo Shamans Cup
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$504 Bids
BETTY JOE - Dzonakwa - The Wild Woman of the Woods
Apr 28, 1:00 PM CST
BETTY JOE - Dzonakwa - The Wild Woman of the Woods
by Saskatchewan Network for Art Collecting
Est: $180- $250
$1003 Bids
LARGE ANCIENT NEAR EAST PERSIAN JIROFT STONE WEIGHT
Apr 21, 10:00 AM EDT
LARGE ANCIENT NEAR EAST PERSIAN JIROFT STONE WEIGHT
by Antique Arena Inc
Est: $100- $150
$603 Bids
A square shaped Northwest Coast drum, 9 1/4 x 8 3/4 in. (23.5 x 22.2 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
A square shaped Northwest Coast drum, 9 1/4 x 8 3/4 in. (23.5 x 22.2 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $50- $75
$503 Bids
Doug Zilkie, 6 x 6 1/2 x 15 in. (15.2 x 16.5 x 38.1 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
Doug Zilkie, 6 x 6 1/2 x 15 in. (15.2 x 16.5 x 38.1 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $600- $800
$4603 Bids
Andy Bruce, 9 1/2 x 8 x 4 1/2 in. (24.1 x 20.3 x 11.4 cm.)
Apr 17, 9:00 AM PDT
Andy Bruce, 9 1/2 x 8 x 4 1/2 in. (24.1 x 20.3 x 11.4 cm.)
by Maynards Fine Art & Antiques
Est: $300- $500
$2603 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Other Cultures


Roseberys

Roseberys

Chiswick Auctions

Chiswick Auctions

Maynards Fine Art & Antiques

Maynards Fine Art & Antiques

Plakas Auctions

Plakas Auctions