Honestly Abeless: Remembering the 16th President of the United States

Honestly Abeless: Remembering the 16th President of the United States
Emancipation Proclamation, 1865Augustus Hageboech (German-born American); Davenport, IowaLithograph on paper; 20 x 17 in.32744Gift of Mrs. Pearl Wall LangMary Lincoln Doll, late 19th to early 20th CenturyUnknown MakerCotton and papier-mâché37951Gift of Mrs. Lilian Norman GallyAbraham Lincoln Doll, mid 20th CenturyMuriel Bruyere; Los Angeles, Califo...
Continue reading
  77 Hits
  0 Comments
77 Hits
0 Comments

Silver Blooms: Celestial Crowns of the Yao

Silver Blooms: Celestial Crowns of the Yao
Celestial Crowns, 20th CenturyYao culture; Yunnan Province, ChinaSilver, copper, zinc, cloth and hair2007.23.10, 2015.26.10.1-.2Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih and Anonymous Gift Sweet Sixteen Different cultures around the world come of age at different times and mark that rite of passage in different ways. In the United States a sweet sixteen mig...
Continue reading
  197 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
197 Hits
0 Comments

Beauty in the Eye of the Beheld

Beauty in the Eye of the Beheld
Madame Modjeska in her Forest of Arden with EyinHance™ filter applied, 1916Frank Coburn (American, 1862-1938)Oil on wood panel; 20 3/4 x 25 3/4 in. 3821Gift of Frank Coburn Emperor’s New Eyes Every artist to have ever painted a portrait knows that if they fail to capture the sitter’s eyes, that they have failed in their task to capture the ess...
Continue reading
  398 Hits
  2 Comments
398 Hits
2 Comments

Anne Shih: The Unresting Chair

Anne Shih: The Unresting Chair
Anne Shih posing in front of terracotta warriors, 2012 Heart of Gold This Women’s History Month the Bowers Blog has looked at some of the great women responsible for building up the Bowers Museum from scratch, instituting a modern system of record keeping for the Bowers’ permanent collection, and donating an incredible collection California scene p...
Continue reading
  604 Hits
  4 Comments
604 Hits
4 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: The Woman Herself

The Ann Cullen Collection: The Woman Herself
Untitled Paintings, 1989-1992Ann Cullen (American, 1928 - 2018); CaliforniaWatercolor on paper2018.6.50-.51Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection Renaissance Woman This Women’s History Month the Bowers Blog has focused on some of the great women that have been associated with the Bowers Museum. Today’s post looks at a donor and artist responsible ...
Continue reading
  310 Hits
  0 Comments
310 Hits
0 Comments

Margaret Key: First Lady of the Bowers Museum

Margaret Key: First Lady of the Bowers Museum
Photograph of Margaret Key, c. 1986 Successors As difficult as it is to start something from scratch, most will attest that picking up someone else’s work can be every bit as difficult. As we dive deeper into Women’s History Month, this second post in a series on the great women associated with the Bowers looks at Margaret Key who started at the mu...
Continue reading
  368 Hits
  1 Comment
368 Hits
1 Comment

Bessie Beth Beginnings

Bessie Beth Beginnings
Bessie Beth Coulter, c. 1927Unknown photographer; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 6 7/8 × 5 in.32505.20Bowers Museum Collection An Object in Motion As any who have ever combatted inertia can attest—presumably all of us—it is far more difficult to start something than it is to keep it in motion. March is Women’s History Month, and this year...
Continue reading
  394 Hits
  3 Comments
394 Hits
3 Comments

An Ox-spicious Moo Year Post

An Ox-spicious Moo Year Post
Detail of Untitled (Mexican Men with Ox Cart), early 20th CenturyClay Kelly (American, 1874-?); MexicoPencil on paper; 4 1/2 x 11 in.33317.31Gift of Mrs. Clay Kelly Legen-Dairy Creatures Earlier in this month the Bowers Museum celebrated the Chinese New Year with our Virtual Chinese New Year Festival for which we are having an encore showing t...
Continue reading
  377 Hits
  3 Comments
377 Hits
3 Comments

Flora Batson: The Queen of Song

Flora Batson: The Queen of Song
Detail of 37521Gift of Mr. Carl French Burns Santa Ana Stars Santa Ana has been home to many stars, and a venue for far more. For example, the city’s stages were graced in the late years of the 19th century by the presence of perhaps the best Shakespearean actress of her day, Poland’s Madame Helena Modjeska. However, in those days it would have bee...
Continue reading
  381 Hits
  0 Comments
381 Hits
0 Comments

Bowers Bromances and Gal Pals: A Valentine’s Day Post

Bowers Bromances and Gal Pals: A Valentine’s Day Post
New Traditions Respectively popularized by the 2001-2010 hospital comedy Scrubs and a 2010 episode of Parks and Recreation, bromances—platonic love between two male friends—and the February 13th celebration of female friendships called Galentine’s Day are both relatively recent creations, but the sentiments which they represent date back to antiqui...
Continue reading
  420 Hits
  0 Comments
420 Hits
0 Comments

Two Frontiers: The Sculpture of Ed Dwight

Two Frontiers: The Sculpture of Ed Dwight
Eight is Enough, 1979Ed Dwight (American, 1933-); ColoradoBronze and wood; 17 1/2 x 25 x 21 1/2 in.81.83.1Gift of the Artist Outer Space to Creative Space Ed Dwight is a man who has worn many hats over his lifetime. Real estate and construction entrepreneur, restaurateur, engineer, marketing representative, Air Force test pilot, the first Black ast...
Continue reading
  439 Hits
  3 Comments
439 Hits
3 Comments

Portrait of Eight: Framing Oceanic Cartes-de-Visite

Portrait of Eight: Framing Oceanic Cartes-de-Visite
New Zealand Council House, late 19th CenturyLouis Buderus; East St., Rockhampton, Queensland, AustraliaPhotographic print; 2 1/2 x 4 1/8 in.93.41.30Gift of Mr. E. Morgan Stanley Days Gone By Back in the days where proper business conduct involved handshakes rather than batting away all would-be violators of personal space with two yardsticks duct t...
Continue reading
  551 Hits
  1 Comment
551 Hits
1 Comment

Fortune Favors the Talisman-Toting

Fortune Favors the Talisman-Toting
Sculpture of Lord Ganesh, 18th CenturyIndiaWood and paint; 9 x 3 5/8 in.99.56.21 Gift of Mr. Michael Phillips Ushering In Yesterday’s inauguration came with a message that everyone in this country can get behind: unity. As the United States moves into a new chapter of combating pandemic, financial hardship, and racial inequality, we can all agree t...
Continue reading
  468 Hits
  1 Comment
468 Hits
1 Comment

Portholes to Taiwan: Fifteen Traditionally Painted Chinese Scenes

Portholes to Taiwan: Fifteen Traditionally Painted Chinese Scenes
Repel Evil and Bring Good Fortune, 2017Tang Jian-Feng (Taiwanese); probably TaiwanWatercolor on paper; 20 7/8 × 20 7/8 in.2020.11.4Gift of Jack J. Liang Getting Round Around the end of 2017, the Taiwanese artist Jack J. Liang reached out to seventeen of his contemporaries to create a series of eighteen watercolor on paper circular paintings each in...
Continue reading
  515 Hits
  0 Comments
515 Hits
0 Comments

Test of Medal: End of Watch

Test of Medal: End of Watch
Shaw in uniform, 1940s True Patriot What does it mean to be a patriot? Many of us may have been asking ourselves that and similar questions over the last day. On Veteran’s Day the Bowers Museum opened Test of Medal: Charles J. Shaw and the Montford Point Marines which tells the story of Charles J. Shaw, one of the first Blacks to join the United St...
Continue reading
  464 Hits
  0 Comments
464 Hits
0 Comments

Toast to the Old Year: Drinking Vessels of the Bowers

Toast to the Old Year: Drinking Vessels of the Bowers
Group of drinking vessels from the Bowers Museum2017.11.24, 97.50.48, 2019.7.5, and 83.32.20 Hindsight is 2020 No matter how you slice it, 2020 has been a year for the books. As we look back on 365 days fraught with natural disasters, a growing feeling of social unrest and a looming threat of pandemic, it is easy to only remember the bad. For many ...
Continue reading
  600 Hits
  2 Comments
600 Hits
2 Comments

Gifts That Keep Giving: The Kula Trade Ring

Gifts That Keep Giving: The Kula Trade Ring
Shell Currency (Mwali), late 20th CenturyMilne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaConus shell, beads, shell, wood, fiber and rope; 13 3/4 × 12 × 3 1/2 in.2014.15.18Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Danny and Anne ShihExchange Necklace (Bagi), early to mid 20th CenturyRossel Island, Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaShell and twine; 20 × 2 1/4...
Continue reading
  806 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
806 Hits
0 Comments

Takes One to Snow One: Evylena Nunn Miller’s Oils of Japan in Winter

Takes One to Snow One: Evylena Nunn Miller’s Oils of Japan in Winter
Winter in Mastumoto City, 1920-1922Evylena Nunn Miller (American, 1888-1966); Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture, JapanOil on cardboard; 10 x 14 in.31804.12Evylena Nunn Miller Memorial Collection A Fifth Those of us looking out our windows in California may as well have forgotten that under the right cold-weather conditions, water can become snow, howeve...
Continue reading
  698 Hits
  0 Comments
698 Hits
0 Comments

Treasures in Gold & Jade: Bowers Edition

Treasures in Gold & Jade: Bowers Edition
Rare Mediums, Done Well Despite being closed to the public the Bowers Museum is excited to announce that this Saturday is the virtual opening of our long-awaited Treasures in Gold & Jade: Masterworks from Taiwan, featuring pieces from two artists: Wu Ching who creates gold casts from wood carvings and Huang Fu-shou who carves sculptures from ja...
Continue reading
  703 Hits
  0 Comments
703 Hits
0 Comments

Test of Medal: Bar-B-Que Pit Stories

Test of Medal: Bar-B-Que Pit Stories
Charles J. Shaw II at the Bar-B-Que Pit, mid 20th Century Grilling the Kids Just before the Bowers Museum closed to the public, we opened Test of Medal: Charles J. Shaw and the Montford Point Marines, which tells the story of Charles J. Shaw II, the first Black Marine to train an integrated platoon of marines. Our last post in the series on his lif...
Continue reading
  1009 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1009 Hits
0 Comments

Kernel of Thanksgiving: The Bowers Museum’s Corn-llections

Kernel of Thanksgiving: The Bowers Museum’s Corn-llections
Tustin's Peanut Cornucopia at the Parade of Products, 1905-1906Unknown photographer; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 5 x 7 in.17429Gift of Mrs. Lucy Lockett Cornucopia Those of us who are familiar with the story of the Pilgrims’ arrival in Plymouth know that they would have perished in a harsh winter had it not been for the help of Tisquan...
Continue reading
  629 Hits
  0 Comments
629 Hits
0 Comments

Cold-Press: Prints by Three Inuit Artists

Cold-Press: Prints by Three Inuit Artists
Untitled (Woman with Two Changelings), 1962Pitseolak Ashoona (Inuit, 1904-1983); Cape Dorset, Nunavut Territory, CanadaEngraving on paper; 17 3/4 × 23 1/2 × 5/8 in.2013.8.6Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Burton W. Fink National Native American Heritage Month The rapid technological advances of the 20th century presented more change than any other in human his...
Continue reading
  675 Hits
  0 Comments
675 Hits
0 Comments

Test of Medal: Charles J. Shaw and the Montford Point Marines

Test of Medal: Charles J. Shaw and the Montford Point Marines
New exhibition on the life of Charles J. Shaw II, running from November 11, 2020 to January 10, 2021 Veteran’s Day Originally marking the armistice ending World War I, Veteran’s Day has become an annual reminder to thank all the brave men and women in the United States armed forces. The Bowers Museum has celebrated this Veteran’s Day with an exhibi...
Continue reading
  731 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
731 Hits
0 Comments

Kin and Kiln: Tafoya Black-on-Black Ware

Kin and Kiln: Tafoya Black-on-Black Ware
Black-on-Black Ware Vessel, 1920-1930Unknown Artist; Santa Clara Pueblo, New MexicoCeramic and pigment; 11 x 9 in.F83.17.1Gift of Mrs. Geraldine Davis National Native American Heritage Month When we think about the beautiful pottery vessels of the Southwest, we most likely conjure the image of brilliantly colorful polychrome vessels. Of course, Nat...
Continue reading
  824 Hits
  1 Comment
824 Hits
1 Comment

Take No Grave Image: Tombstones and Caskets of the Bowers’ Collections

Take No Grave Image: Tombstones and Caskets of the Bowers’ Collections
 Gravestone of Charles and Ada Bowers at Fairhaven Memorial, some additional spookiness added for effect. All Hallows’ Eve While the Halloween spirit might be somewhat diminished in a year in which unmasked children coming to your door asking for candy are more frightening than a monster doing the same, it is even more important to take a brea...
Continue reading
  766 Hits
  0 Comments
766 Hits
0 Comments

Song Swan Song: Three Taiwanese Scroll Painters

Song Swan Song: Three Taiwanese Scroll Painters
Scroll Paintings, c. 1930-1968Lin Yu-shan (Taiwanese, 1907-2004) and Chang Lee Tekhoe (Taiwanese, 1893-1972); TaiwanInk on paper2020.2.1,.3-.5Gift of Aloysius F. Kuo Good Things Come in Threes Aside from clues in their subject matter, many paintings do not immediately bely their geographical origin. Back in February of this year the Bowers Museum r...
Continue reading
  842 Hits
  1 Comment
Tags:
842 Hits
1 Comment

Preserved in Pottery: Ceramics of the Taíno

Preserved in Pottery: Ceramics of the Taíno
Vessel and Bowl, 1200-1500Taíno culture; Dominican RepublicCeramic99.20.3,.16Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Warren and Nancy Lampkin Indigenous Peoples’ Day Several months ago, the Bowers Blog looked at two Taíno woodcarvings in the Bowers Museum’s collections. In the post we discussed how the culture was the first group to greet Columbus’ expedition and how...
Continue reading
  1031 Hits
  0 Comments
1031 Hits
0 Comments

Shared Likeness: Portraits of Don Bernardo Yorba

Shared Likeness: Portraits of Don Bernardo Yorba
Portrait of Don Bernardo Yorba, c. 1850Henri Pénelon (French, 1827-1885)Oil on canvas, gilt frame; 24 ½ x 19 ¾ x 1 ¼ in.5070Gift of Mrs. Herman Locke and Bernardo Marcus Yorba, Jr. Lasting Legacy It is important to remember that especially in California the first Hispanic Americans did not immigrate to the country, but already lived here when Mexic...
Continue reading
  1001 Hits
  0 Comments
1001 Hits
0 Comments

Seeing Double: Emigdio Vasquez’ Paintings at the Bowers

Seeing Double: Emigdio Vasquez’ Paintings at the Bowers
Detail of Untitled, 1992Emigdio Vasquez (American 1939-2014)Oil on Canvas; 48 x 68 in.2001.46.1Gift of Mr. & Mrs. Robert S. Barnes The Godfather National Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15th as a celebration of the cultures and contributions of Americans whose families came from Latin America and Spain. Ending on October 15, the mon...
Continue reading
  1166 Hits
  1 Comment
1166 Hits
1 Comment

Heavy Reading: Mayan Glyphs in the Bowers’ Collections

Heavy Reading: Mayan Glyphs in the Bowers’ Collections
Glyph Panel, probably Classic Period (250-900)Maya culture; Palenque, Chipas, MexicoCarved limestone; 45 1/2 x 23 in.2000.40.2The Dr. Eli B. and Aimee Cohen Memorial Collection Block Letters Even prior to Spanish colonization of the Americas, many of the ancient cities of the Maya had already been long since abandoned in favor of new metropolises. ...
Continue reading
  1049 Hits
  1 Comment
1049 Hits
1 Comment

New Installation: Miao Masters of Silver

New Installation: Miao Masters of Silver
The Bowers Museum's new Miao Masters of Silver installation. Quarter of a Thousand Shining Moons The Bowers Museum is reopening its doors to the public this Saturday, September 12 with a brand-new installation in our East West Bank Gallery: Miao Masters of Silver. Due in large part to the generous support of Anne Shih, the Bowers owns perhaps the f...
Continue reading
  1229 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1229 Hits
0 Comments

Coils and Swamp Oils: Baskets of the Emberá-Wounaan

Coils and Swamp Oils: Baskets of the Emberá-Wounaan
Miniature Basket (Hösig Di), mid to late 20th CenturyEmberá or Wounaan culture; Darién Province, PanamaPalm fibers (astrocaryum standleyanum and carludovica palmata) and natural pigments; 2 x 3 3/8 x 3 3/8 in.2020.9.53Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Oh, What an Untangled Baskets They Weave Over the globe various basketry techniques are employed to...
Continue reading
  765 Hits
  0 Comments
765 Hits
0 Comments

Potent Portables: History of Japan’s Netsuke

Potent Portables: History of Japan’s Netsuke
Group of Figural Netsuke, 20th CenturyJapanIvory and pigments88.31.280-.31Gift of City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks Obi One Clothing not having pockets is an annoyance that inevitably demands some creative solution; be it a purse, backpack, or fanny pack—the ultimate marriage of style and comfort in object toting. In Japan’s Ed...
Continue reading
  1187 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1187 Hits
0 Comments

Anna Hills: Painter, Educator, Activist

Anna Hills: Painter, Educator, Activist
Low Tide, c. 1920Anna Althea Hills (American, 1882-1930)Oil on canvas; 7 x 10 in.F7748Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection Centennial August 18, 2020 marks one hundred years since the Nineteenth Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, giving most women in the United States the right to vote. In California, Proposition 4 of 1911 had alre...
Continue reading
  3370 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3370 Hits
0 Comments

Chasing an Idyll: Helena Modjeska and Jozef Chelmonski

Chasing an Idyll: Helena Modjeska and Jozef Chelmonski
Formerly Sielanka (An Idyll), 1885Jozef Chelmonski (Polish, 1849-1914)Oil on canvas; 46 x 28 in.7601Gift of the Estate of Amadeus Gustavus Langenberger Stormy Weather Ahead This pastoral scene of two Polish peasants in a moment of repose is among the most iconic works in the Bowers Museum’s Fine Art Collection. Up to this point it has been known on...
Continue reading
  1309 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1309 Hits
0 Comments

Orange County Beach Day

Orange County Beach Day
Picnic on the Beach, 1880-1899Newport Beach, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 5 3/4 x 6 3/4 in.6964BTerry E. Stephenson Collection Where We Would Rather Be It is the height of summer and though many of us would enjoy a typical beach day spent with friends or family, social distancing and other precautions taken for this year’s pandemic have thrown a w...
Continue reading
  1164 Hits
  0 Comments
1164 Hits
0 Comments

Bite-Sized Bowers Miniatures

Bite-Sized Bowers Miniatures
Miniature Painting and Easel, 20th CenturyPossibly Claire M. Doret (Swiss-born American, 1887-1982)Oil on canvas and wood; 6 x 4 in.99.36.33.1,.7Gift of Mrs. Katherine Hotchkiss Small World After All With some of the Bowers Museum’s most impressive objects unarguably being the largest, it can be all too easy to let smaller objects in the collection...
Continue reading
  1013 Hits
  0 Comments
1013 Hits
0 Comments

Californian Still Life: Don Juan Forster’s Brandy Still

Californian Still Life: Don Juan Forster’s Brandy Still
Brandy Still, c. 1776-1831Southern CaliforniaCopper; 53 x 36 in.2810Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John Forster Name Brandy The earliest brandies, used medicinally, appear to date back to 13th century France, but stories hold that the first commercial brandy was created, as many things are, almost completely by accident. In the 16th century a Dutch trader di...
Continue reading
  985 Hits
  0 Comments
985 Hits
0 Comments

Guy Rose by Any Other Name Would Paint Just as Well

Guy Rose by Any Other Name Would Paint Just as Well
Detail of Marguerite, c. 1909Guy Rose (American, 1867-1925); FranceOil on canvas; 15 x 19 inF7693 Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection Stemming from California In the 19th and 20th centuries the natural splendor of California made it a mecca for artists. Its coast a gem of glittering sapphire, golden sands rising to palisades, and sun in the s...
Continue reading
  1574 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1574 Hits
0 Comments

Raising Flags: The Stars and Stripes of the Bowers

Raising Flags: The Stars and Stripes of the Bowers
Quilt, c. 1920Maker unknown; United StatesCotton, fabric and flannel; 47 1/4 x 40 1/4 in.32147AGift of the Fredda Barger Estate Murky Territory Aside from the places we have traditionally seen the American flag since it was first introduced in 1777, it seems like every year it appears in more and more unexpected situations. In 2020 one is as likely...
Continue reading
  1061 Hits
  0 Comments
1061 Hits
0 Comments

Taking Root and Stock: Naturally Formed Fijian Clubs

Taking Root and Stock: Naturally Formed Fijian Clubs
Rootstock Club (Vunikau), mid 19th CenturyFiji, MelanesiaWood; 46 x 3 1/2 x 3 3/8 in.2020.5.1Bowers Museum Purchase Hit Square with a Root The fundamentals of warfare are in large part the same across all cultures and all times: there is a point of contention and so the sides—whatever they might be—rally a force and attack an enemy with weapons. As...
Continue reading
  1205 Hits
  0 Comments
1205 Hits
0 Comments

Illustrated Sports: OC History Edition

Illustrated Sports: OC History Edition
Santa Ana Rats, early 20th CenturyB.F. Conaway; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic Print; 8 x 10 in.8484Bowers Museum Collection This One’s for You, Pop It is difficult to make any sort of overarching generalizations about fathers, but all the same most would agree that the fatherly gestalt is a sports fan. Whether it is abruptly yelling at a TV abo...
Continue reading
  1251 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1251 Hits
0 Comments

Paper Monuments: Lithographs and Drawings of Francisco Zúñiga

Paper Monuments: Lithographs and Drawings of Francisco Zúñiga
Impresiones de Egipto, Plancha 6, 1982Francisco Zúñiga (Costa Rican-born Mexican, 1912-1998)Lithograph on Arches; 13 ¾ x 19 ¾ in.2016.5.13Anonymous Gift A Man of Many Renaissances Part of the incredible nature of art is the scope of what it depicts. From nonrepresentational paintings capturing feelings to photorealistic portraits, artists define th...
Continue reading
  1327 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1327 Hits
0 Comments

Following Townsend to Abstraction

Following Townsend to Abstraction
Turbulence, 1960sMildred Scott Townsend, American, (1897-1985)Mixed media on silk; 40 x 50 in.F80.40.5Gift of the Artist A Blur You can lose the forest for the trees, and sometimes it takes getting farther away from something to really be able to see it. Mildred Scott Townsend, an early and mid 20th century Californian painter likely understood thi...
Continue reading
  1152 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1152 Hits
0 Comments

From Caverns Beneath the Earth: Two Taíno Carvings

From Caverns Beneath the Earth: Two Taíno Carvings
Deity Figure (Zemí), 1100-1500Taino culture; Dominican RepublicWood; 13 3/8 x 5 3/4 x 6 1/4 in.2005.38.1Gift of Nancy Nicola and Warren Lampkin, In memory of Armand Labbe Far from Home Many of us were first taught about Columbus’ new sea route to the Americas in a fun limerick, but the fallen explorer’s time in the western hemisphere is problematic...
Continue reading
  1436 Hits
  0 Comments
1436 Hits
0 Comments

Spring Spookfest: Creepy Objects from the Bowers

Spring Spookfest: Creepy Objects from the Bowers
Prisoner of War Guillotine Model, 1770-1825Maker UnknownBone and pigment; 15 1/2 x 14 x 5 3/4 in. 2011.25.73Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Burton W. Fink Halloween in May With the very possible exception of May gray, there is not much particularly unsettling about the spring months. In fact, they are stalwartly reputed to be upstanding months by most definit...
Continue reading
  1213 Hits
  0 Comments
1213 Hits
0 Comments

Ghana's Golden Age of Movie Posters 3: Triple Impact

Ghana's Golden Age of Movie Posters 3: Triple Impact
New Killers in Town, 1996Jonas Golden Boy (Ghanaian)Oil on cotton canvas; 62 × 47 in.2014.28.30Gift of Jay and Helen Lavely Three is the Magic Number In a world where movie theaters are threatened by a global pandemic, one group offers a respite from the doldrums of home quarantine: Ghanaian poster painters. Three long years have passed since the h...
Continue reading
  1649 Hits
  0 Comments
1649 Hits
0 Comments

Wayside Madonna by Edith Catlin Phelps

Wayside Madonna by Edith Catlin Phelps
Detail of Wayside Madonna, 1939Edith Catlin Phelps (American, 1874-1961)Oil on canvas; 40 x 33 1/2 in.32158Gift of Mrs. Edith Catlin Phelps Wow, Upside-Down In today’s world, it is more important than ever to have someone that is always in your corner of the ring, pushing you forward and supporting you. So, let us talk about moms. They not only fit...
Continue reading
  1857 Hits
  2 Comments
Tags:
1857 Hits
2 Comments

Hand Solo: Armless Figures and Disembodied Hands of the Bowers

Hand Solo: Armless Figures and Disembodied Hands of the Bowers
Artist's rendition of 2004.66.1.1-.2 and 31901 in dialogue in a futuristic setting. Man: The Lore (ian) This coming Monday marks yet another May the Fourth (be with you) on the Galactic Standard Calendar. While it might be an unremarkable day for the least nerdy of us, for those of us raised on Star Wars the date is as sacred as the Jedi texts. And...
Continue reading
  1421 Hits
  0 Comments
1421 Hits
0 Comments

The Wachtel Watchers: The Earth in Plein Air

The Wachtel Watchers: The Earth in Plein Air
From Sunland Looking Across Valley to Big Tujunga, c. 1925Marion Kavanaugh Wachtel (American, 1875-1954)Watercolor on paper; 14 x 19 9/16 in.F7690Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection This Little Planet Called Home April 22, 2020 marked the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day. Originally held as rallies and walks in major cities throughout ...
Continue reading
  1752 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1752 Hits
0 Comments

The Tooth Tech’s Tiny Tut

The Tooth Tech’s Tiny Tut
Tut Replica, c. 1930Unknown PhotographerPhotographic print99.27.4Gift of Ms. Katherine Hotchkiss Little Mysteries Having been a collecting institution for almost the past 80 years, the Bowers Museum’s collections are, in some cases, rather eclectic. Whether it’s a wreath made from Victorian-era hair art, a Polynesian breadfruit pounder discovered i...
Continue reading
  1398 Hits
  0 Comments
1398 Hits
0 Comments

Bowers in a Brush Stroke: Raúl Anguiano’s Untitled Mural

Bowers in a Brush Stroke: Raúl Anguiano’s Untitled Mural
Untitled (Artworks of the Bowers Museum), 1999Raúl Anguiano (Mexican, 1915-2006)Oil on canvas; 101 1/2 x 183 1/2 x 1 1/2 in.99.63.1Gift of Bowers Museum Collectors Council Memory Palace If you have been missing the Bowers Museum as much as we have, then perhaps you too have been walking its halls in your imagination and picturing the placements of ...
Continue reading
  1589 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1589 Hits
0 Comments

The Osborne Collection: Opening Ceremony Pt. 2

The Osborne Collection: Opening Ceremony Pt. 2
Frieda, Ellen and Carolyn performing at the opening of the Bai ra Nagsechel ar Cherchar, 1969Image courtesy of Frieda Wray Beginning of the End The electric opening of the Palau Museum’s Bai ra Nagsechel ar Cherchar was marked with dancing and music, but there is always more going on than meets the senses. In last week’s post the Bowers Blog explor...
Continue reading
  1164 Hits
  0 Comments
1164 Hits
0 Comments

The Osborne Collection: Opening Ceremony Pt. 1

The Osborne Collection: Opening Ceremony Pt. 1
The Bai ra Ngesechel ar Cherchar shortly after being constructedImage courtesy of Frieda Wray Grand Opening Openings are extravagant affairs. If all goes to plan they only happen once, so to commemorate the moment there should be a grand party with musicians, speakers thanking all those involved and, most importantly, there should be a pair of comi...
Continue reading
  1450 Hits
  0 Comments
1450 Hits
0 Comments

The Osborne Collection: Return to Palau

The Osborne Collection: Return to Palau
Bai Model, mid 20th CenturyPalau, MicronesiaWood; 5 1/4 × 3 × 11 3/4 in.2019.17.5Gift of Frieda O. Wray from the Estate of Dr. & Mrs. Douglas and Carolyn Osborne If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home by Now People can meet one another anywhere, but almost all cultures build specialized buildings in which community members can come together to discus...
Continue reading
  1526 Hits
  0 Comments
1526 Hits
0 Comments

The Osborne Collection: To Begin, A Biography

The Osborne Collection: To Begin, A Biography
Carolyn and Dr. Douglas Osborne, 1968 passport photographsImages courtesy of Frieda Wray Tolúk Back In a previous blog post we showcased two rare tolúk currency pieces from the Osborne Collection which originates from the island country of Palau in southwest Micronesia. Though the post focused more on the objects than their provenance, the donation...
Continue reading
  1798 Hits
  0 Comments
1798 Hits
0 Comments

Doing it by the Brooks: A Foray into Modernist Jewelry

Doing it by the Brooks: A Foray into Modernist Jewelry
Necklace, 1964George Brooks (Czechoslovakian-born American, 1925-); Santa Barbara, CaliforniaSilver, 18 kt yellow gold, ebony and pearls2020.3.1Gift of Mr. George Brooks Jade Laden, Never Jaded Modernist jewelry exploded into popularity between the 1930s and 1960s as a counterculture movement to the highly organic Art Nouveau and rigid Art Deco sty...
Continue reading
  1756 Hits
  0 Comments
1756 Hits
0 Comments

All Swords of Things: Five Decorative Short Swords from the Congo

All Swords of Things: Five Decorative Short Swords from the Congo
Swords, 19th to 20th Century Ngombe or Poto culture; Democratic Republic of the CongoWood, leather, metal, fur and fiberF79.58.2, F80.49.26, F79.59.2, 2003.42.29 and 2013.12.3Gifts of Dr. and Mrs. Myron Klapper, Mr. and Mrs. Jon Herman, Dr. and Mrs. Iwao Kawakami, Susan Lerer and David Poiry Old Knives Tale Swords once played a vital role in warfar...
Continue reading
  1935 Hits
  0 Comments
1935 Hits
0 Comments

The Tooled Trunk: A Leatherwork Chest from the Viceroyalty of Peru

The Tooled Trunk: A Leatherwork Chest from the Viceroyalty of Peru
Chest, 17th to 18th CenturyPeruLeather, wood and iron; 20 1/2 x 36 x 19 3/4 in.2020.1.1aGift of The Nesselrod Family Trunk Show Luggage is probably most on the mind when you’ve been told by an airline that it’s just barely oversized and that you’ll have to check it, but its history dates as far back as human migration. Longtime visitors to the Bowe...
Continue reading
  1652 Hits
  1 Comment
1652 Hits
1 Comment

A Budai By Any Other Name Would be Just as Compassionate

A Budai By Any Other Name Would be Just as Compassionate
Hotei Relaxing in a Field, mid to late 20th CenturyMaker Unknown; ChinaPainting on porcelain tile96.52.34Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Herb Hansen Lots of Loves Love is a fairly complex force that can (often insufficiently) be defined as an intense feeling of affection towards family; friends; a significant other; a childhood pet gerbil named Scruffy, rest ...
Continue reading
  1880 Hits
  0 Comments
1880 Hits
0 Comments

Magamaog’s Lashed Logs: Yami Canoes of Orchid Island

Magamaog’s Lashed Logs: Yami Canoes of Orchid Island
Fishing Canoe (Taratara), 20th CenturyYami culture; Lanyu (Orchid) Island, TaiwanWood, paint and feather; 81 × 204 × 36 in. 97.8.1Gift of Leon Chen When a Gangway’s Raised a Porthole Opens While the hopes of the Bowers most nautically inclined visitors may be sunk following the departure of Arthur Beaumont: Art of the Sea this past weekend, rest as...
Continue reading
  1773 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1773 Hits
0 Comments

William Wendt: Transcendentalist

William Wendt: Transcendentalist
Sycamores, 1918William Wendt (American, 1865-1946)Oil on canvas; 26 3/4 x 42 3/4 x 2 1/4 in.F7678Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection Transcendental State of Mind The great transcendentalists had come and gone by the time the William Wendt first arrived in California with a brush in hand and love of nature in heart and began painting this gold...
Continue reading
  2751 Hits
  0 Comments
2751 Hits
0 Comments

Carved Cushions: Headrests of New Guinea

Carved Cushions: Headrests of New Guinea
Headrests, 20th CenturyNew Guinea, MelanesiaWood2019.22.23; 2015.7.11; 2018.14.37 and 2019.22.29Gifts of Mr. Michael Hamson and Anonymous Donor Island Dreams Barring Boris Karloff’s 1932 rendition of a mummy caught in eternal vertical slumber and perhaps a few other standing sleepers throughout history and literature, most of us sleep in a decidedl...
Continue reading
  1652 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
1652 Hits
0 Comments

Whatsits and Whatnots: Bowers Permanent Collection Oddballs

Whatsits and Whatnots: Bowers Permanent Collection Oddballs
Detail of 2003.50.37Gift of William R. Moran  Weird and Just Downright Weird As part of an ongoing project to classify the Bowers Museum’s collections, our Collections team has reached many an oddball object that does not easily fall into standard categories. Many more have outlandish or wonderfully rare names. Today’s post is a celebration of...
Continue reading
  1477 Hits
  0 Comments
1477 Hits
0 Comments

Visions of 2020: Eyeglasses of the Bowers Museum

Visions of 2020: Eyeglasses of the Bowers Museum
Glasses, 18th to 20th CenturyVarious Manufacturers; North America and EuropeGlass, metal, plastic and tortoiseshell2000.8.13,.39,.80,.95.,113,.170,.176,.225,.244,.251,.284,.537Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Richard Preston To See or Not to See Twenty-Twenty is perfect vision, it’s said that it is hindsight, and mostly importantly it’s the new year. To better...
Continue reading
  2251 Hits
  0 Comments
2251 Hits
0 Comments

Shine Bright Like a Star of Bethlehem Quilt

Shine Bright Like a Star of Bethlehem Quilt
Star of Bethlehem Pattern Quilt, c. 1840Maker unknownCotton; 100 x 100 in.2002.14.86Gift of Mr. William R. Moran Hindsight is This Year With the holiday season now tragically in our rearview, and with us either already returned to our weekly lives or soon to reenter the fray, sometimes it is nice to take one last gander at an aspect of the late ann...
Continue reading
  1788 Hits
  0 Comments
1788 Hits
0 Comments

Weighing in on Steelyard Scales

Weighing in on Steelyard Scales
Steelyard Scales, 19th to 20th CenturyLaosWood, metal, fiber and tortoiseshell2019.23.71-.80Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Scales of Justice When most think of scales, they likely summon an image of Lady Justice, perhaps guarding the entrance of a courthouse, with golden scales for balancing the deeds of the good, the evil and the neutrally align...
Continue reading
  5743 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
5743 Hits
0 Comments

That’s Got to Sting: Barbed Blades from the Admiralty Islands

That’s Got to Sting: Barbed Blades from the Admiralty Islands
Dagger, 19th Century Admiralty Islands, Bismarck Archipelago, Manus Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaWood, stingray barb, fiber and beads 2019.20.2Bowers Museum Purchase Blade with a Barb The Bowers Blog has previously spent a lot of time focusing on the art of Admiralty Islands, a small chain located in Papua New Guinea’s Bismarck Archipelago....
Continue reading
  3294 Hits
  0 Comments
3294 Hits
0 Comments

Legally Fond: The Old Orange County Courthouse

Legally Fond: The Old Orange County Courthouse
Orange County Courthouse after Completion, 20th CenturyUnknown Photographer; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 10 x 8 in.7019.21Terry E. Stephenson Collection Justice Just Is This year has been one of remembrance and celebration as 2019 marks Santa Ana’s sesquicentennial. With posts on the city’s earliest land holders, the origins of the fir...
Continue reading
  2069 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2069 Hits
0 Comments

Thanks for the Memories: Brittany Boats Painted by Edgar Payne

Thanks for the Memories: Brittany Boats Painted by Edgar Payne
Marine, Boats in Brittany, c. 1929Edgar Payne (American, 1882-1947)Oil on canvas; 16 1/2 x 19 3/4 x 2 1/2 in.F7600Gift of Mrs. Edgar Payne Not Just Foodsgiving Thanksgiving is a no-nonsense holiday because—as much as we try to take it as a moment to reflect and honor the things in our lives that we are thankful for—the holiday is perhaps most-loved...
Continue reading
  2332 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2332 Hits
0 Comments

Wood that Can be Beat: Fijian Barkcloth Beaters

Wood that Can be Beat: Fijian Barkcloth Beaters
Barkcloth Beater (Ike), 19th Century Viti Levu, Fiji, PolynesiaWood; 10 ¼ x 2 5/16 x 2 1/8 in. 2019.20.1Bowers Museum Purchase March to the Beat of your Own Beater Whether made from the sheared wool of adorably cloud-like animals, pulled from cotton plants or spun from the gossamer silk of worms; textiles are made with a variety of methods througho...
Continue reading
  2131 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2131 Hits
0 Comments

Tolúk: Palauan Women’s Currency Trays

Tolúk: Palauan Women’s Currency Trays
Woman's Valuables (Toluk), early to mid 20th CenturyPalau, MicronesiaTortoiseshell2019.17.32-.33Gift of Frieda O. Wray from the Estate of Dr. & Mrs. Douglas and Carolyn Osborne Have Tolúk and See Them The Bowers Museum recently acquired the Osborne Collection, an assemblage of objects originating from the island country of Palau—an archipelago ...
Continue reading
  2510 Hits
  0 Comments
2510 Hits
0 Comments

Prequel to the Origin Story: A Prehistory of Santa Ana’s Foundation

Prequel to the Origin Story: A Prehistory of Santa Ana’s Foundation
Don Bernardo Yorba’s House, c. 1910Unknown Photographer; Santa Ana Canyon, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 8 x 10 in.8478Terry E. Stephenson Collection Variations of a City In both Forged in Fire Safety: The First Santa Ana Fire Department and A Beginner’s Guide to Santa Ana Street Names the Bowers Blog has previously looked at the early hi...
Continue reading
  2430 Hits
  0 Comments
2430 Hits
0 Comments

Bowers Museum Ghost Stories Vol. II

Bowers Museum Ghost Stories Vol. II
A somewhat edited photograph of the Bowers home (32154B.3)Bowers Museum Collection Bowers Spook Factory It’s that time of year once again… again! Spooks and eeriness lurk at every maligned corner; costumed kids, hidden hooligans and scary skateboarders with tricks (never treats) roam as far as the eye can see; an unreasonable number of black cats s...
Continue reading
  1670 Hits
  1 Comment
1670 Hits
1 Comment

Cheating Death with Arthur Beaumont

Cheating Death with Arthur Beaumont
Death of an Ignoble Enemy, 1946Arthur Edwaine Beaumont (English-born American, 1890-1978)Watercolor and tempera on paper; 24 1/2 x 28 1/2 in.98.58.1Gift of John E. Seabern Don’t Fear the Reaper, Ignore Him Some of us may have at one point in our lives found ourselves in a precarious situation such as a near-miss car accident that could just as easi...
Continue reading
  2497 Hits
  0 Comments
2497 Hits
0 Comments

Angling for Answers: A Bowers Procedural Investigation

Angling for Answers: A Bowers Procedural Investigation
Mystery Box, late 19th to early 20th CenturyXiamen, Fujian Province, ChinaTin, ivory, felt and string 2019.16.1.1-.47Gift of Jan G. Wood Some Sleuthing Required Not everything has an easy answer. Previous Bowers Blog posts have explored a range of open-ended mysteries including Native American cogged stones, an apparent relic from the Portola Exped...
Continue reading
  1451 Hits
  0 Comments
1451 Hits
0 Comments

TASS List: Russian World War II-era Propaganda Posters

TASS List: Russian World War II-era Propaganda Posters
Our One Thousandth Blow (TASS Poster 1000), June 5, 1944Pavel Sokolov-Skalia (Russian, 1899-1961), Nikolai Federovich Denisovskii (Russian, 1901-1981), Vasilli Lebedev-Kumach (Russian, 1891-1949); Moscow, RussiaInk on Paper2019.14.6Bowers Museum Permanent Collection Comrade in Arms When we think of war our first thought is likely of the battlefield...
Continue reading
  3572 Hits
  0 Comments
3572 Hits
0 Comments

Officers and Offices: History of the Santa Ana Police Department

Officers and Offices: History of the Santa Ana Police Department
Motorcycle Officer, early 20th CenturyUnknown Photographer; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 10 x 8 in.37057.2Leo Tiede Photography Collection Police Story California at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries was very much a part of the frontier, with justice often poorly exacted by unqualified parties. In its earliest iter...
Continue reading
  3566 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3566 Hits
0 Comments

Feathered Funds: Solomon Island Currency Rolls

Feathered Funds: Solomon Island Currency Rolls
Feathered Currency Roll (Tevau), late 19th-mid 20th CenturySanta Cruz Islands, Temotu Province, Solomon Islands, MelanesiaFeather, bark, shell, fiber, resin and bead; 6 x 15 5/8 x 16 3/4 in.2001.74.14Gift of Mr. William Moran Red the Feather that Coils With the Bowers Museum’s recently opened Dimensions of Form: Tamayo and Mixografía, many visitors...
Continue reading
  2229 Hits
  0 Comments
2229 Hits
0 Comments

Forms in Dimensions: Tamayo and Zapotec Sculpture

Forms in Dimensions: Tamayo and Zapotec Sculpture
Detail of Seated Deity Figure, 300-600 ADZapotec culture; MexicoCeramic; 14 1/2 x 10 in.2000.56.7The Dr. Eli B. and Aimee Cohen Memorial Collection Universes of Meaning This week marks the opening of Dimensions of Form: Tamayo and Mixografía, an exhibition primarily about a series of three-dimensional prints made by Rufino Tamayo, one of the most i...
Continue reading
  2360 Hits
  0 Comments
2360 Hits
0 Comments

The Immaculate ‘Art of Mary

The Immaculate ‘Art of Mary
Detail of Heart of Mary, c. 1750Miguel Ballejo y Mandirano; MexicoOil on canvas; 30 x 22 in.89.22.2Donated by Mr. Gene R. Wood Feast of the Hurt Pain is an awful thing. It can come from a variety of sources, but it is perhaps most punishing when it attacks us through a loved one. The Christian faith is in part based around the suffering and self-sa...
Continue reading
  3450 Hits
  0 Comments
3450 Hits
0 Comments

Bebe in the Woods: Santa Ana’s Jailed Star

Bebe in the Woods: Santa Ana’s Jailed Star
Detail of Bebe Daniels Imprisoned in Orange County Jail, 1921Unknown photographer; Santa Ana, Orange County, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 7 x 5 in.34636Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Weston Walker Paying the Toll Back in February the Bowers Blog looked at one reason why Hollywood stars were stopping by early Santa Ana in Saint Ann’s Inn: Santa Ana’s Love Sh...
Continue reading
  2660 Hits
  0 Comments
2660 Hits
0 Comments

Birds of a Feather: Plumed Headdresses from Around the World

Birds of a Feather: Plumed Headdresses from Around the World
Detail of Feathered Headdress, 20th CenturyKayapo Mebêngôkre culture; Xingu River area, Para, BrazilMacaw and waterfowl feather, string and cotton; 68 x 57 in.91.34.1.1-.2Bowers Museum Acquisitions Fund Purchase As the Crow Flies, Not So Far Bird feathers are surprisingly intricate structures: leaflike in nature with a rigid or semi-rigid midrib ca...
Continue reading
  3555 Hits
  0 Comments
3555 Hits
0 Comments

Two-Face: An Unfinished Tongan Paddle Club

Two-Face: An Unfinished Tongan Paddle Club
Details of Paddle Club (Mougalaulau), mid 19th CenturyTonga, PolynesiaWood; 45 ½ in.2019.19.1Bowers Museum Purchase; Photograph courtesy of Michael Hamson Endless Buffering The towering spires of Antoni Gaudí’s Basilica de la Sagrada Familia, the fragmented narrative of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Love of the Last Tycoon or Michelangelo’s unfinished ...
Continue reading
  2290 Hits
  0 Comments
2290 Hits
0 Comments

Every Federal Employee Deserves Favor: Gifts of State in the Bowers’ Collections

Every Federal Employee Deserves Favor: Gifts of State in the Bowers’ Collections
Gold Bracelet, c. 1970JordanianGold and elephant hair; 1 1/8 x 2 1/2 in.77.4.8Gift of United States Government The Gift that Keeps on Taking In the United States there is a price that can be put on changing someone’s mind. It exists in the form of an upper limit for the value of gifts that can be accepted from foreign dignitaries and, given that it...
Continue reading
  1937 Hits
  0 Comments
1937 Hits
0 Comments

Night’s Bane: Fire Dance Masks of New Britain's Baining Culture

Night’s Bane: Fire Dance Masks of New Britain's Baining Culture
Fire Dance Mask (Vungvung), 20th CenturyBaining culture; Gazelle Peninsula, New Britain, East New Britain Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaBark cloth, bamboo cane and paint; 65 x 53 x 148 1/2 in.2007.6.1Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Sparks Like Stars in the Sky Held at torch-point against a pressing sea of night or built as a pyre to be enci...
Continue reading
  3295 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3295 Hits
0 Comments

A Beginner’s Guide to Santa Ana Street Names

A Beginner’s Guide to Santa Ana Street Names
Map of Santa Ana, 1915Clyde D. Butler and Geo L. Bates; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPaper and ink; 20 × 25 5/8 in.17481Bowers Museum Permanent Collection Spurgeons, Surgeons and Spurred Dons For those of us who live in, work in or enjoy any of the myriad offerings of Santa Ana, we have spent hundreds, if not thousands of hours traversing the county seat’s...
Continue reading
  3868 Hits
  0 Comments
3868 Hits
0 Comments

Five Faces of the Moon

Five Faces of the Moon
Composite image of the moon and objects in this post. One Giant Leap On July 20, 1969 three humans boarded an aluminum and stainless-steel rocket, rose into the heavens and collectively became the first group to set foot on another celestial body. Taking his first apprehensive steps on the alien scape of the moon, Neil Armstrong famously said “that...
Continue reading
  2285 Hits
  0 Comments
2285 Hits
0 Comments

Snakes and Stones: Perak Headdresses from Ladakh

Snakes and Stones: Perak Headdresses from Ladakh
Headdress (Perak), late 20th CenturyLadakhi culture; Ladakh Region, Jammu and Kashmir State, IndiaCotton, lambskin, yak hair, turquoise, coral, carnelian and silver; 54 × 20 × 1 3/4 in.2019.7.1Anonymous Gift Crown of the Roof of the World Ladakh is a region of India located in the barren mountainous foothills between the Himalayas and the Karakoram...
Continue reading
  4113 Hits
  0 Comments
4113 Hits
0 Comments

J.L. Hubbell: Silver Tongue, Golden Heart and Wool Rugs

J.L. Hubbell: Silver Tongue, Golden Heart and Wool Rugs
Rug, c. 1910Navajo; probably Ganado, ArizonaDyed wool; 65 x 105 in.2019.5.1Gift of Dennis J. Aigner White Hat There is good cause for the romanticizing of the American West: it is a breathtaking part of this nation. Mesas rise from the red earth like monolithic and silent guardians; the skies are distilled blue, endless and not cloudy all day. More...
Continue reading
  2502 Hits
  0 Comments
2502 Hits
0 Comments

Fourth and Fourth: Santa Ana’s 4th Street Independence Day Celebrations

Fourth and Fourth: Santa Ana’s 4th Street Independence Day Celebrations
School Children on Float, July 4, 1890Unknown Photographer; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 8 x 5 in.2983Gift of Mr. William McPherson July the Fourth Be with You There is a lot to like about the Fourth of July. Family, friends and neighbors all come together for a day of celebrating this country’s birth with sumptuous barbeque, plentiful ...
Continue reading
  2222 Hits
  0 Comments
2222 Hits
0 Comments

Buff’s Bluffs: Buffing up on Conrad Buff

Buff’s Bluffs: Buffing up on Conrad Buff
Ocean Vista, c. 1925Conrad Buff (Swiss-born American, 1886-1975); Southern CaliforniaOil on Masonite; 36 x 24 in.91.47.4Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Christian and Joyce Title (Con)Rad, With Bodacious Later Works Rugged individualism remains an ingrained facet of American identity, but it is the combination of individualism and collaboration that create tru...
Continue reading
  2311 Hits
  1 Comment
Tags:
2311 Hits
1 Comment

Out of the Pouch: Shedding Light on a Papuan Marsupial Figure

Out of the Pouch: Shedding Light on a Papuan Marsupial Figure
Marsupial Figure, 1500 BCE-1600 CELaiagam Valley, Central Enga Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaStone; 3 1/2 × 3 1/2 × 7 1/2 in.2019.8.1Bowers Museum Purchase Set in Stone When it comes to the art of Papua New Guinea, very few things are literally set in stone. Bags are made from fiber or coir, shields and clubs from wood, ornaments from feathe...
Continue reading
  2277 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2277 Hits
0 Comments

Gone Fishing: Catching Neptune’s Bounty on Father’s Day

Gone Fishing: Catching Neptune’s Bounty on Father’s Day
Fishing Hook, late 19th to early 20th CenturyIñupiaq culture; Seward Peninsula Area, AlaskaWalrus ivory, lead, iron and cotton thread; 2 1/4 × 4 1/8 in.39352Gift of Winifred P. Morgan Let’s See What’s Biting, Champ Some dads fit all the clichés. They are handy when something needs fixing, quick with a pun but otherwise tactful enough to let mom han...
Continue reading
  2205 Hits
  0 Comments
2205 Hits
0 Comments

Forged in Fire Safety: The First Santa Ana Fire Department

Forged in Fire Safety: The First Santa Ana Fire Department
Hook and Ladder Volunteer Firemen of Santa Ana, May 1, 1888Photo by B. F. Conaway; Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print; 8.5 x 5 ¼ in. 2821Gift of John Luxembourger Sunny Santa Ana California William H. Spurgeon and his wife spent a few years in the early 1860s living in Los Angeles until she passed away. Heartbroken, he moved back to the East t...
Continue reading
  2180 Hits
  0 Comments
2180 Hits
0 Comments

Blade with a Beak: New Guinean Bone Daggers

Blade with a Beak: New Guinean Bone Daggers
Bone Daggers (Yina and Amia Ava), 20th CenturyAbelam and Iatmul culture; East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, OceaniaCassowary bone and pigment2010.22.5-.31Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih They do Move in Herds Unassuming dinosaurs of the modern era that they are, cassowaries are incredible creatures. For example, though flightless the...
Continue reading
  4039 Hits
  0 Comments
4039 Hits
0 Comments

At Harms Length: Shark Tooth Spears of the Gilbert Islands

At Harms Length: Shark Tooth Spears of the Gilbert Islands
Spear Heads (Tataumanaria), late 19th CenturyI-Kiribati culture; Gilbert Islands, Kiribati, MicronesiaPalm wood, shark teeth and sennit; various dimensions2019.6.1-.2Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Into the Maw The Bowers Museum’s continued efforts to improve our Oceanic Collections has driven the acquisition of several shark tooth weapons from th...
Continue reading
  3137 Hits
  0 Comments
3137 Hits
0 Comments

Baby Back Cribs: Embroidered Carriers of the Miao

Baby Back Cribs: Embroidered Carriers of the Miao
Baby Carrier with Pleated Ties, 20th CenturyMiao culture; Gulong Town, Guizhou Province, China, AsiaCotton and silk; 23 x 30 in.2008.9.71Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Miao Mom Weightlifting Club We should be thankful to the wonderful moms in our lives every day, but Mother’s Day is the one day a year we have chosen to distill that love into the ...
Continue reading
  2338 Hits
  1 Comment
2338 Hits
1 Comment

Much Naboo About Nothing

Much Naboo About Nothing
Sculpture, late 20th CenturyPossibly Kwoma culture; Middle Sepik River Region, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaWood, pigment and cowrie shell; 55 in.98.18.10Gift of the Jordan Community Trust Return of the Fourth Younglings, padawans and Jedi masters, it is time to force the important issues once more! In previous years the Bowers B...
Continue reading
  2624 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2624 Hits
0 Comments

I Came, I Saw Ikat: Sumbanese Hinggi

I Came, I Saw Ikat: Sumbanese Hinggi
Shoulder Cloth (Hinggi), late 20th CenturySumba culture; Sumba Island, East Nusa Tenggara Province, Lesser Sunda Islands, IndonesiaCotton; 96 × 112 in.2016.15.45Anonymous Gift Syncretic Dyeing Art has always been a chorus of different groups reacting to, influencing, inspiring and drawing upon one another’s creations. On the small East Indonesian i...
Continue reading
  2356 Hits
  0 Comments
2356 Hits
0 Comments

To the Trinity and Beyond: Jesus at the Bowers

To the Trinity and Beyond: Jesus at the Bowers
Pilgrimage Souvenir, 19th CenturyJerusalem, modern-day IsraelMother-of-pearl; 8 ½ x 8 ½ in.31521Gift of Mrs. John Carruthers Getting a Rise out of Spring Spring is a time of rebirth. Winter’s chill recedes, new flowers bloom and trees seemingly come back from the dead. Branches which for all the world appeared to be deceased are given Lazaran life,...
Continue reading
  2371 Hits
  0 Comments
2371 Hits
0 Comments

Dragon Glass: Taking Stock at the Bowers Museum

Dragon Glass: Taking Stock at the Bowers Museum
Battle and Hunting Weapons, 300-1519Michoacán, MexicoObsidian; various dimensions2003.10.42C-IAnonymous Gift The Night King Cometh As most fantasy buffs are well¬-aware, HBO’s Game of Thrones returns for the first of its final six episodes this upcoming Sunday. Not to spoil too much of the show for those who are interested in watching but have not ...
Continue reading
  3463 Hits
  1 Comment
3463 Hits
1 Comment

Thomas Hunt: A Legacy Remembered

Thomas Hunt: A Legacy Remembered
Detail of Untitled, c. 1924Thomas Hunt (Canadian-born American, 1882-1938)Oil on paper on board; 10 x 12 in.F7742Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection Anti-Entropic Relay Legacy is without a doubt one of the constant thought worms throughout history, and we can all agree that it is not distributed in equal measure to the deceased. While it is p...
Continue reading
  2952 Hits
  0 Comments
2952 Hits
0 Comments

Utagawa Yoshiiku and the Blooming World

Utagawa Yoshiiku and the Blooming World
Detail of 94.64.10. Gift of Mr. William Drell. Love to Spring this On You As all living in southern California are acutely aware, this winter’s deluge has brought with it the happy occasion of a Californian super bloom. The hillsides and shallow valleys of California’s inland deserts—so often entirely devoid of flora—have sprung to life, ...
Continue reading
  2412 Hits
  0 Comments
2412 Hits
0 Comments

Dharma Wheels and High Heels: Shashi Dhoj Tulachan in Dialogue

Dharma Wheels and High Heels: Shashi Dhoj Tulachan in Dialogue
Guo Pei's Garden of Soul collection backed by Shashi Dhoj Tulachan's paintings. Fashion 101 Recent visitors to the Bowers Museum will have noticed a few new faces—placid as they may be—in the Freedman Galleria, the long hallway travelling between our main desk and the Bowers Museum’s changing gallery spaces. Of course, these seven new, poised ...
Continue reading
  3494 Hits
  2 Comments
3494 Hits
2 Comments

Saint Patrick’s Day Snake Parade

Saint Patrick’s Day Snake Parade
Armlet, c.1885Paris, FranceGold, emerald and stone; 5 1/2 x 4 3/8 x 4 1/8 in.2884Gift of Mr. & Mrs. James Willis Rice Balancing the Scales While St. Patrick’s Day has evolved over time to take on a character of its own, the original Saint Patrick was canonized as the patron saint of Ireland for—among many other feats—purging Ireland of its resident...
Continue reading
  2277 Hits
  0 Comments
2277 Hits
0 Comments

Bring a Shark to a Knife Fight: Short Blades of the Gilbert Islands

Bring a Shark to a Knife Fight: Short Blades of the Gilbert Islands
Knife (Tebutu), 19th CenturyI-Kiribati culture; Gilbert Islands, Kiribati, MicronesiaPalm wood, tiger shark teeth (galeocerdo cuvier) and sennit; 6 1/2 in.2019.3.1Bowers Museum Purchase War Changes Quite a Bit If humans have consistently been innovative in any one field, it is in the discovery of more effective ways to injure one another. Often hea...
Continue reading
  2920 Hits
  0 Comments
2920 Hits
0 Comments

Blankets of the Chilkat Tlingit

Blankets of the Chilkat Tlingit
Blanket, early 20th CenturyMaggie Kadanaha (Chilkat Tlingit, 1873-1959); Alaska, Northwest Coast, United States of AmericaMountain goat’s wool with cedar bark warp strands and pigment; 54 × 74 × 1 in.2016.14.1Gift of the Herbert W. Clark Trust Alaska For Directions At the turn of the 20th Century the Chilkat Tlingit lived along the painfully stark ...
Continue reading
  4170 Hits
  0 Comments
4170 Hits
0 Comments

Bamana Ciwarakunw: Icons of Agrarian Society

Bamana Ciwarakunw: Icons of Agrarian Society
Headdress (Ciwarakun), 20th CenturyBamana culture; Western MaliWood and metal; 11 × 17 5/8 × 3 in.2018.13.28Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih On Demigods and Farmers Agrarian cultures often have myths about the origin of their farming practices. As the primary source of subsistence for these groups, farming is a lifeline that everything else grows f...
Continue reading
  2335 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2335 Hits
0 Comments

Saint Ann’s Inn: Santa Ana’s Love Shack

Saint Ann’s Inn: Santa Ana’s Love Shack
Saint Ann's Inn and Grounds, 1920sEdward W. Cochems (American, 1874-1949); Santa Ana, CaliforniaPhotographic print35558.7Gift of Mr. Eldon G. McNeil Valentine’s Day It’s that day we love to love! Measured in bouquets of flowers, squares of chocolate and cards swarming with weapon-toting winged babies, Valentine’s Day is truly a holiday cherubbed by...
Continue reading
  2464 Hits
  0 Comments
2464 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection: Milford Zornes

The Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection: Milford Zornes
Detail of Corona Del Mar, 1960Milford Zornes (American, 1908 - 2008); Corona Del Mar, CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 14 7/8 × 21 1/2 in.2018.6.48Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection
Milford Zornes
“The fact is that you never lick watercolor painting, and you can't very well give it up as long as you feel you haven...
Continue reading
  3393 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3393 Hits
0 Comments

Reflections on Early Chinese Mirrors

Reflections on Early Chinese Mirrors
Mirror with Animal, Leaf, and Fruit Designs, Tang Dynasty (618-907)Han culture; ChinaBronze and silver; 1/2 x 6 1/8 in.2005.28.1In Memory of Armand J. Labbe The World in Bronze Mirrors today are multi-layered compositions of metal and glass, but historically the only requirement was a reflective surface. In China, a country whose complex manufactur...
Continue reading
  4166 Hits
  1 Comment
Tags:
4166 Hits
1 Comment

Progenitor Protection: Wooden Shields of the Asmat

Progenitor Protection: Wooden Shields of the Asmat
War Shields, 20th CenturyCentral and Northern Asmat culture; Papua (Irian Jaya) Province, Indonesia, MelanesiaWood, pigment and sago-frond; Various Dimensions2017.10.148, L.2010.4.4, F75.16.1 and 2006.19.1Anonymous Gift, Bowers Museum General Acquisition Fund Purchase, Loan courtesy of Gayle and Edward P. Roski and Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Meyer Bello ...
Continue reading
  3455 Hits
  0 Comments
3455 Hits
0 Comments

Shards of Fabric: Crazy Quilts of the Bowers Museum

Shards of Fabric: Crazy Quilts of the Bowers Museum
Crazy Quilt, c.1900Sarah Ann Hinkley Tucker; Whitehall, WisconsinSilk and velvet; 60 x 75 in.80.35.1Gift of Mrs. Marjorie H. Carr Quilty as Charged One of the earliest, largest, and most-often exhibited collections of Americana at the Bowers is the museum’s collection of quilts, ranging in date from our nation’s independence to the end of the 20th ...
Continue reading
  6435 Hits
  0 Comments
6435 Hits
0 Comments

Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection: Noel Quinn

Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection: Noel Quinn
Detail of June Lake, mid to late 20th CenturyNoel Quinn (American, 1915 - 1993); June Lake, Mono County, CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 19 1/4 × 26 7/8 in.2018.6.24Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection Quintessential Artist This post harkens back to the Bowers Blog’s 6-part series on the artists of the Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection, now...
Continue reading
  2771 Hits
  2 Comments
2771 Hits
2 Comments

Death and the Ideal Man: New Ireland Tatanua Masks

Death and the Ideal Man: New Ireland Tatanua Masks
Men wearing tatanua masks at a sing-sing in Libba Village, New Ireland, New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea.Taken during the Roski-Keller-Martin Expedition to the New Ireland Province in 2008. Acceptance   When we think of masks in western culture, we most often think of tools used to disguise one’s identity. In most other cultures in the w...
Continue reading
  4591 Hits
  1 Comment
Tags:
4591 Hits
1 Comment

Well Trained: The Bowers Museum’s Model Train Collection

Well Trained: The Bowers Museum’s Model Train Collection
Märklin SK800 Steam Locomotive, 1946Gebr. Märklin & Cie. GmbH; Göppingen, GermanyMetal; 7 in.80.78.21Gift of Mr. Richard D. Lusch All Aboard The winter holidays bring with them an array of traditions and customs, most of which date back hundreds and hundreds of years. The tradition featured in this post is a newer one, roughly 130 years of age, and...
Continue reading
  2658 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2658 Hits
0 Comments

A Mission Impossible: Arthur Edwaine Beaumont’s Carmel Mission

A Mission Impossible: Arthur Edwaine Beaumont’s Carmel Mission
Detail of Untitled (The Carmel Mission), 1949Arthur Edwaine Beaumont (English-born American, 1890-1978); Carmel, CaliforniaWatercolor and tempera on paper; 15 x 12 in.96.65.1Gift of Rae and Sandra Young Bombshell Artist The Bowers Blog has previously examined the works of the English-born American artist, Arthur Edwaine Beaumont, looking at his tim...
Continue reading
  2518 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2518 Hits
0 Comments

Shell to Pay: Boiken Wamayuwa and Weingga

Shell to Pay: Boiken Wamayuwa and Weingga
Shell Currency (Wamayuwa), 19th CenturyYangoru Boiken culture; Prince Alexander Mountains, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaShell (tridacna gigas); 9 7/8 x 8 ¼ in.2018.13.63Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih All the Money in the World The Bowers Blog has spent a great deal of time exploring currency in its myriad shapes and sizes. From...
Continue reading
  2814 Hits
  0 Comments
2814 Hits
0 Comments

Splash of Color: Massim Canoe Prow Boards

Splash of Color: Massim Canoe Prow Boards
Splashboard (Lagim), 20th CenturyMassim culture; Trobriand Islands, Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, OceaniaWood and paint; 32 5/8 x 25 5/8 x 2 5/8 in.2011.11.2Collected on behalf of the Bowers Museum by the Roski-Keller-Martin Expeditions 2000-2008 Art of the Deal When it comes to making deals, everyone wants a leg up on the compet...
Continue reading
  3322 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3322 Hits
0 Comments

Fibers of History: Tongan Tapa Cloths

Fibers of History: Tongan Tapa Cloths
Detail of Tapa Cloth (Ngatu), 20th CenturyTongan culture; Tonga, PolynesiaPounded tree bark and pigment; 78 x 152 in.93.18.1Donated by Jeff and Laura Blackie Cloth With a Bark Tapa cloth, a barkcloth made from the inner bark of trees, is one of the most distinctive products made by the cultures of the Pacific Islands and remains at the heart of Pac...
Continue reading
  8186 Hits
  2 Comments
Tags:
8186 Hits
2 Comments

Under the Hilt: Identifying Three Japanese Swords

Under the Hilt: Identifying Three Japanese Swords
Short Sword (Wakizashi), 15th to 19th CenturyTsuguhiro (Japanese, active 1469-1521), Jiryūsai Tomohide (Japanese, 1778-1847) and Seiyōken Akitada (Japanese, active 19th Century); Fukui Prefecture, Chūbu Region, Japan and Nagasaki, Kyushu Region or Tokyo, Kantō Region, JapanSteel, manta ray skin, lacquer, silk and iron; 2 3/4 x 2 3/8 x 27 1/4 in.200...
Continue reading
  7682 Hits
  1 Comment
7682 Hits
1 Comment

The Ann Cullen Collection: Dong Kingman

The Ann Cullen Collection: Dong Kingman
Bridge and Tugboats, mid 20th CenturyDong Kingman (American, 1911 - 2000); New York City, New YorkWatercolor on paper; 19 1/2 x 29 1/2 in.2018.6.11Ann and Bill Cullen Memorial Collection Delightful, Diligent As this series winds to a close, we end by looking at an artist who—perhaps out of all of the artists in the collection had the closest friend...
Continue reading
  3360 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3360 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: Millard Sheets Pt. 2

The Ann Cullen Collection: Millard Sheets Pt. 2
Girl by Candlelight, 1942-1962Muggs Van Sant (American, 1898 - 1964)Watercolor on paper; 3 x 4 in.2018.6.34Gift of Ann Cullen Covered by Sheets The last post in this series on the Ann Cullen Collection left off with Millard Sheets still as a relatively young man working still to create a unique style and find the subjects that would appeal to him m...
Continue reading
  2304 Hits
  0 Comments
2304 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: Millard Sheets Pt. 1

The Ann Cullen Collection: Millard Sheets Pt. 1
Family Flats, 1932Millard Sheets (American, 1907 - 1989); CaliforniaLithograph; 16 x 22 1/2 in.2018.6.26Gift of Ann Cullen Three Sheets to the Blog So far in this series we have examined the close ties between the various painters of the Ann Cullen Collection. In this post we look at the noble heart at the center of the group, the ever-charismatic ...
Continue reading
  2754 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2754 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: Phil Dike

The Ann Cullen Collection: Phil Dike
Waves Spilling Over Rocks, 1976Phil Dike (American, 1906 - 1990); CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 18 x 24 in.2018.6.6Gift of Ann Cullen Something Else Entirely In the Bowers Museum’s recently acquired paintings by Phil Dike (American, 1906-1990), we see birds suspended in motion over breaking waves. Dike was drawn to the ocean just as he was drawn t...
Continue reading
  2695 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2695 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: Emil Kosa Jr.

The Ann Cullen Collection: Emil Kosa Jr.
Bunker Hill, mid 20th CenturyEmil Kosa Jr. (French-born American, 1903-1968); Los Angeles, CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 22 x 28 in.2018.6.17Gift of Ann Cullen First Kosa’s First Full… absolutely full to the brim with life and a love for painting. Is there any other way to describe Emil Kosa Jr.? In the second post of this series on the Ann Cullen...
Continue reading
  4072 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
4072 Hits
0 Comments

The Ann Cullen Collection: Rex Brandt

The Ann Cullen Collection: Rex Brandt
Autumn Day, 1976Rex Brandt (American, 1914-2000); Temecula, CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 18 x 24 in.2018.6.2Ann Cullen Collection An Open Book The Bowers Museum’s California Bounty: Image and Identity 1850-1930 has been quietly boasting the triumphs of Californian artists since its opening in 2016. Housed in the halls of the museum’s Historic Win...
Continue reading
  3714 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
3714 Hits
0 Comments

Ceramics of Western Mexico: Dog Edition

Ceramics of Western Mexico: Dog Edition
Sitting Dog, 200 BC-300 ADColima culture; Colima, MexicoClay and slip; 4 1/2 x 3 1/2 x 5 1/2 in.99.82.8Gift of John Ross, D.D.S. All Bite, No Bark Dogs have remained versatile, benevolent additions to human society for as long as they have been domesticated. The same is very much true for the Xoloitzcuintli or Mexican Hairless, with the tragic coro...
Continue reading
  4993 Hits
  1 Comment
4993 Hits
1 Comment

McCloskey: Return of the Medieval Revival

McCloskey: Return of the Medieval Revival
Detail of Untitled (Renaissance Man in Garden), c. 1901Alberta Binford McCloskey (American, 1855-1911)Oil on canvas; 13 1/2 × 9 1/4 in.74.22.27Gift of Mrs. Eleanor Russell Galahad to Have You Romanticized histories have always captured the hearts of those looking to the past. Of all the periods nostalgically viewed through rose-colored lenses, perh...
Continue reading
  2272 Hits
  1 Comment
2272 Hits
1 Comment

Beaumont and Los Angeles' Chinatowns

Beaumont and Los Angeles' Chinatowns
Pagoda, Old Chinatown, Los Angeles, 1949Arthur Edwaine Beaumont (English-born American, 1890-1978); Los Angeles, CaliforniaWatercolor on paper; 14 x 21 x ½ in.86.40.1Gift of Mr. Paul J. Knaak A Perfect Beau… As one among many artists who painted the California Style watercolors that developed during the early and mid 20th Century, the English-born ...
Continue reading
  2524 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
2524 Hits
0 Comments

The Clay Day of Papuan Vessels

The Clay Day of Papuan Vessels
Ceremonial Vessel (Kwam), 19th to 20th CenturyAbelam culture; Wambisa Village, Maprik District, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, MelanesiaClay, red, white and orange ochre; 3 ¼ x 9 3/8 x 7 3/8 in.2018.7.16Gift of Michael Hamson Vessel Variety Perhaps above all else, Papua New Guinea is best-known for its variety. As many as 850 languages are ...
Continue reading
  4189 Hits
  6 Comments
Tags:
4189 Hits
6 Comments

Blade with a Bite: The Shark Tooth Swords of the Gilbert Islands

Blade with a Bite: The Shark Tooth Swords of the Gilbert Islands
Club Sword (Te Toanea), mid 19th CenturyI-Kiribati culture; Gilbert Islands, Republic of Kiribati, MicronesiaWood, shark teeth, fiber, tapa and human hair; 34 1/2in.2018.9.1Gift of Mark Blackburn Whirling Dervish Barring the outlandish Sharknado franchise, when we hear the phrase “shark attack,” the assumption is that we would have to be in the oce...
Continue reading
  5970 Hits
  1 Comment
5970 Hits
1 Comment

McCloskey to a Heart

McCloskey to a Heart
Detail of Untitled (Portrait of Eleanor with Wreath), c. 1892Alberta Binford McCloskey (American, 1855-1911) or William Joseph McCloskey (American, 1859-1941)Watercolor; 15 7/8 x 14 1/874.22.9Gift of Mrs. Eleanor Russell Once Upon a Time Any visitor to the Bowers Museum will recognize the works of Alberta Binford and William Joseph McCloskey by the...
Continue reading
  2632 Hits
  0 Comments
2632 Hits
0 Comments

Plein to See: Nellie Moulton and the Bequest that Began It All

Plein to See: Nellie Moulton and the Bequest that Began It All
Detail of Coastline, early 20th CenturyNellie Gail Moulton (American, 1878-1972)Oil on masonite; 12 × 14 × 3/4 in.F7736Martha C. Stevens Memorial Art Collection Stevens Start-off One of the lesser-known facts about the Bowers Museum’s remarkable Fine Art Collection is that we have only paid for one painting. The rest of the Bowers’ 1543 currently a...
Continue reading
  3644 Hits
  0 Comments
3644 Hits
0 Comments

Moana Materials: Polynesian Art in Disney’s Moana

Moana Materials: Polynesian Art in Disney’s Moana
Tapa Cloth (Ngata), 20th CenturyTongan culture; Tonga, PolynesiaPounded tree bark and pigment; 78 x 152 in.93.18.1Donated by Jeff and Laura Blackie Trip to Motunui When Walt Disney Animation Studios released Moana (2016) to a tidal wave of good reviews, the Bowers Museum was overjoyed to see Polynesian culture and art achieve broad recognition with...
Continue reading
  5307 Hits
  0 Comments
Tags:
5307 Hits
0 Comments

Call of the Sea: Shell Instruments from Western Mexico

Call of the Sea: Shell Instruments from Western Mexico
Incised Shell Trumpet, 900-1200 Michoacán culture; Puruándiro, Michoacán, MexicoShell; 12 1/2 x 6 3/4 x 5 1/8 in.34076Gift of Mr. Graciano Bernal Tooting Their Own Horns Shells take the sea with them wherever they go. Maybe this is the reason why so many cultures utilized and still utilize shell as a medium for both artistic and utilitarian purpose...
Continue reading
  3808 Hits
  0 Comments
3808 Hits
0 Comments

Seat of Power: Prestige Chairs of the Chokwe

Seat of Power: Prestige Chairs of the Chokwe
Chair (Ngundja), early 20th to mid CenturyChokwe culture; AngolaWood, metal and leather; 19 1/2 x 10 1/2 x 13 in.2007.4.55Gift of the Roschen Family Trust Have a Seat Driving to and from work, sitting at a desk, relaxing on the couch—we spend much of our time sitting down without paying too much attention to what we are sitting in. But as thrones, ...
Continue reading
  3230 Hits
  0 Comments
3230 Hits
0 Comments

Yam Digging Sticks of the Abelam

Yam Digging Sticks of the Abelam
Digging Sticks, 20th CenturyAbelam culture; East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia Wood and paint99.76.141; 2011.13.4; 97.138.1; and 2015.7.2Anonymous Gift; Bowers Museum Purchase; Anonymous Gift; and Gift of Mr. Michael Hamson Induction In the United States we understand competition all too well. We compete with neighbors over having the...
Continue reading
  3648 Hits
  0 Comments
3648 Hits
0 Comments

Aloys Bohnen: A Cool Summer Night

Aloys Bohnen: A Cool Summer Night
Detail of Summer Night, c. 1925Aloys Bohnen (American, 1889-1967) Oil on canvas; 34 x 27 in.31163Gift of the James Earl Fraser Estate Into the Grove During the day Californian summers can become oppressively hot—to the point of us wondering if the day’s warmest hours wouldn’t be better passed in siesta. The few respites from this heat can be found ...
Continue reading
  4023 Hits
  1 Comment
4023 Hits
1 Comment

Oh, Say Can You Scrimshaw

Oh, Say Can You Scrimshaw
Scrimshaw of George Washington, early 19th CenturyUnknown artist (American); North AmericaSperm whale ivory and ink; 5 1/4 x 2 1/2 x 1 1/2 in.2011.25.56Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Burton W. Fink New England, Old American Carvings Independence Day is the annual celebration of all things American. For most, revelries might include fireworks, barbeque, throw...
Continue reading
  3194 Hits
  0 Comments
3194 Hits
0 Comments

Hawaiian Lei Niho Palaoa

Hawaiian Lei Niho Palaoa
Necklace (Lei Niho Palaoa), early 19th CenturyHawaiian culture; Hawaii, United States, PolynesiaHair, fiber and walrus ivory; 11 1/4 x 7 7/8 x 2 1/2 in.2018.5.1Bowers Museum PurchasePhotograph courtesy of Bonhams A New Acquisition When it comes to Hawaiian necklaces, the subject can be a somewhat hairy one, though perhaps not for the reasons one mi...
Continue reading
  5545 Hits
  0 Comments
5545 Hits
0 Comments

The Niue Club in Town

The Niue Club in Town
Cleaving Club (Ula-fumiti), early to mid 19th CenturyNiuean culture; Niue Island, PolynesiaWood; 68 7/8 x 5 x 1 ¼ in.2018.4.1Bowers Museum Purchase Behold the Cook-o-nut Captain Cook was the first European to travel to Niue, a small island in the middle of Polynesia, when he landed ashore late in the spring of 1774. His welcome to the small tropica...
Continue reading
  3623 Hits
  0 Comments
3623 Hits
0 Comments

Father’s Day Pipe Dream

Father’s Day Pipe Dream
Pipe, 1000-1700Chumash culture; CaliforniaSteatite and clam shell beads; 1 9/16 x 1 x 12 3/16 in.80017Fred Randolph Aldrich Collection This is a Pipe Does the apotheotic father smoke a pipe? Perhaps he has not since at least the 1950s. Still though, a dad casually puffing on a pipe—maybe on a Sunday morning while reading the paper, fooling around w...
Continue reading
  3377 Hits
  0 Comments
3377 Hits
0 Comments

Hewes-ed from Stone

Hewes-ed from Stone
Busts of David Hewes and Franklina Gray, 1877Giuseppe Andreoni (Italian, 19th Century); Pisa, ItalyMarble; Various Dimensions2697, 32782Gifts of Mrs. D. Eyman Huff and Mr. & Mrs. James A. Moore Total Bust With American Visionary: John F. Kennedy’s Life and Times having just left the Bowers Museum this past weekend, the portraits section of the much...
Continue reading
  2749 Hits
  0 Comments
2749 Hits
0 Comments

Who Answers the Cries: Guanyin at the Bowers

Who Answers the Cries: Guanyin at the Bowers
Guanyin Seated on a Lotus Flower, late Ming Dynasty (1600-1643)Han culture; ChinaWood and pigments; 49 x 16 x 11 in.2005.37.1Gift of Anne and Long Shung Shih Mercy Me Whether or not you recognize the name, if you have been to the Bowers you have seen at least one representation of Guanyin, the adopted Chinese bodhisattva and goddess of mercy. Woode...
Continue reading
  4592 Hits
  5 Comments
4592 Hits
5 Comments

Kept in Suspense: The Samban of the Iatmul

Kept in Suspense: The Samban of the Iatmul
Suspension Hook (Samban), c. 1930Iatmul culture; Suapmeri Village, Middle Sepik River region, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, OceaniaWood and pigment; 25 1/4 × 14 1/2 × 4 in.2017.1.1Bowers Museum Purchase Whoa Black Betty, Tshambwan Save perhaps for weekend trips to big box Swedish furniture stores, we generally do not spend much ...
Continue reading
  3198 Hits
  0 Comments
3198 Hits
0 Comments

Manilla Portfolio: West African Worn Currency

Manilla Portfolio: West African Worn Currency
Manillas, 19th CenturyUnknown Manufacturer; probably Birmingham, EnglandLeaded brass; Various Dimensions2003.43.72-.79Anonymous Gift Who wants to be a Manillionaire? Some might like to make a grand show of wealth, but along the cost of West Africa, one could literally wear their net worth on their sleeve up until the mid 20th Century. At least unti...
Continue reading
  3725 Hits
  0 Comments
3725 Hits
0 Comments

Maud “The Mom” McBroom

Maud “The Mom” McBroom
Basketry Olla, early 20th CenturyPima culture; Arizona, United StatesBear grass, willow and devil’s claw; 11 3/4 × 9 1/4 in.2018.3.3Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John and Elizabeth Stahr That’s Moms Moms are a fairly universal force of good in the world, seeking more often than not to safeguard their children’s wellbeing and ensure their happiness. Top scho...
Continue reading
  2231 Hits
  0 Comments
2231 Hits
0 Comments

These Are Not the Sculptures You’re Looking For

These Are Not the Sculptures You’re Looking For
Ancestor Figure, 20th CenturySukuma culture; TanzaniaWood, metal and hair; 63 in.2002.58.1Gift of Heather Sacre May the Fourth… In an annual celebration of culture, science fiction, and a beloved galaxy not too near to here, the Bowers Blog once again uses May the Fourth to take the hyperspace plunge. Last year we featured a miniature made from a h...
Continue reading
  2437 Hits
  1 Comment
2437 Hits
1 Comment