Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Canoe Model with Decorated Paddles: Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center

Google's  Cultural Institute site has large photos of the birchbark canoe model in the collection of The Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center. Dated to 1780-1820, the souvenir artwork piece features dolls, a sail and paddles along with some highly ornamented decorative paintings.

Canoe Model with Dolls - 1780 - 1820
The Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center

Here is the description on the page:

This model canoe with its accompanying dolls and accessories was the product of French Canadian nuns and Abenaki or Huron converts working together in a thriving cottage industry in Montreal and Quebec. Many of the items they made were sent back to Europe either as gifts to Catholic churches in France or to fill the curio cabinets of Europe’s elite.

Paddle Decoration Closeup

Similar souvenir based canoe models traced back to Quebec nuns and First Nation artisans are the model at the CMC, the Farquharson Model sold at auction in 2005, the Chartres Canoe Model and the Neuchatel model.  The decorations on the paddles all give a clue to the style of paddle art being made at the time.

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