2015 Coeur d’Alene Art Auction / Lot 8275 / 290  •  View Catalog  •   • 

82
Charles M. Russell (1864 – 1926)
Indian Family Bookends
bronze
5.25 inches high each
inscribed in each base: C M Russell [skull] ©1915 B. Zoppo. Foundry. N.Y.

In Charles M. Russell, Sculptor, Rick Stewart wrote that “In his notes on the Indian Family subject, derived from his conversation with the Russells, George Sack [a collector of Russell bronzes] identified the man and woman as members of the Gros Ventre tribe. He further noted that the ‘proud and happy mother’ was holding her infant son, securely held in a cradle board, towards the sunlight. Cradles were made of animal hide stretched over a board frame, with a fur-lined pocket with rawhide-reinforced sides attached to it to hold the infant. The faint design visible on the upper part of the board is consistent with a large, stylized decoration type apparently derived from eastern Canadian sources. Opposite the mother and her child, ‘the father is contentedly dreaming of the time when his young son will make a great name for himself and possibly become a chief of one of the societies, or a Medicine Man.’

“Russell’s Indian Family subjects seem to reflect the Gros Ventres’ all-important ambitions: males sought prestige and influence in their society, while females developed a spiritual relationship with the ‘Great Mystery above’- the basis for the tribe’s health and happiness.”

PROVENANCE
The Artist
Charles S. King, Scarsdale, NY
Present owner, by descent

LITERATURE
Rick Stewart, Charles M. Russell, Sculptor (Fort Worth, TX: Amon Carter Museum, 1994), pages 220-21, example illustrated

82

Charles M. Russell

1864 – 1926

Indian Family Bookends
bronze
5.25 inches high each
inscribed in each base: C M Russell [skull] ©1915 B. Zoppo. Foundry. N.Y.
Sold at Auction: $198,900
Condition Report

Important Notice: Statements of condition are provided as a service to potential bidders; such statements are educated opinions and should not be regarded as facts. The Coeur d’Alene Art Auction has no responsibility for any errors or omissions.