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The basketry collection represents all basketmaking cultures in the American Southwest throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Although not the largest collection of Southwestern Indian basketry (numbering about 890 objects), it is an excellent, representative study collection, offering a rare opportunity to view this art form’s stylistic development across cultures and time.

In the Jicarilla Apache collection, four generations of basketmakers from one family are represented, and the contemporary San Juan Paiute collection may be the largest extant. The many uses of baskets for collecting and storing grains, carrying loads, cooking and serving food, holding water, and many other purposes are reflected in the IARC collection.

For more information on basketry, you may want to visit the SAR Press to view or purchase publications such as:

Indian BasketryIndian Basketry Artists of the Southwest
2001. Susan Brown McGreevy; Foreword by Kevin Navasie

Exploring the history and the current renaissance of basket making in the Native American Southwest, this lavishly illustrated volume features the work and words of the contemporary basket makers that participated in a Convocation at the School of American Research. The basket makers range in age from twenty-one to eighty-two and represent the Akimel O’odham, Apache, Hopi, Navajo, Pueblo, and Tohono O’odham tribes.

Southern Paiute wedding basket. Sumac, natural dyes. Maker unknown. SAR.1981-25-5. Photograph by Addison Doty.