Sotheby’s to host annual sale of American Indian Art on 16 May

Sotheby’s will present it’s annual sale of American Indian Art in New York, on 16 May.

Nez Perce Beaded and Fringed Hide War Shirt composed of finely tanned mountain sheep hide, of poncho form with open sides and partially sewn sleeves, decorated on the mid-section with blue pigment, overlaid across the shoulders and down each arm with hide strips, each sinew sewn in tiny glass seed beads, with a pattern of rectangular panels enclosing a diamond design, rectangular bibs on the neck stitched with linear designs against a red wool cloth ground overlaid on buffalo hide, decorated with rows of dyed quill-wrapped horse-hair pendants and white ermine drops, the sleeves, cuffs and corners with cut hide fringe. Length with fringe 34 in. by width across the sleeves 69 in. Est. $400/600,000. Photo: Sotheby’s

The auction will be led by An Important Nez Percé Beaded And Fringed Hide War Shirt which once belonged to Chief Joseph – the last of the great Native American warrior chiefs who became a defiant advocate for the Nez Percé after they were defeated by the American army (est. $400/600,000). Other highlights in the sale include masks, figurative sculpture, amulets, rattles, pipes, basketry, textiles, pottery, and more functional objects such as cradles and weaponry.

The pre-sale exhibition opens on 12 May 2012.