Monday, December 6, 2010

BLACKFOOT BONNET CASES

This is a pair of Blackfoot Bonnet cases made as the old ones were for a Blackfoot friend of mine who is a bundle owner.  The Blackfeet made and still make these cases to hold their Medicine and Society bundles. The Blackfeet have a very strong tradition of Medicine bundles which is very much in use today.  While the actual rawhide containers house the sacred material and can be seen as a "secular" item, nobody including myself should ever replicate or "play" with the actual material they hold unless you have the rights to do so procured thru proper initiation and training.  The Bundles are held in very high reverence by the Blackfeet and are the center of their identity.  To own one involves not only costly rites transfers, but training, learning the songs that go with the bundle (which actually give it the power it has associated with it) and also moral obligations as well as personal conduct restrictions.   One must hold annual bundle opening ceremony's along with the required feasts as well as other obligatory duties.  These bundles are not to be taken lightly.  

Although the tubular style of case is termed a "Bonnet" case, they can hold just about anything.  These are made with natural pigment paint and brain tanned fringes, as well as trade cloth trim.  



Angela

2 comments:

Artist - David Lemon said...

Beautifully done as always Angela.. How you been?

Carol said...

Fascinating story. I love the stories you share with your art almost as much as the pieces - but I guess they're so intertwined that isn't surprising.