Exhibitions/ Art Object

Man's Shirt

Unrecorded Niimiipu (Nez Perce) Artist (Native American)
ca. 1850
United States, Oregon or Idaho
Niimiipu (Nez Perce)
Hide, quill, horsehair, sinew, wool, glass, pigment
H. 32 11/16 × W. 60 11/16 in. (83 × 154.1 cm)
Credit Line:
Collection of Charles and Valerie Diker (666)
Rights and Reproduction:
Image © Charles and Valerie Diker Collection/Photo: Dirk Bakker
Not on view
Composed of two hides, one for the torso and the other for the sleeves, this shirt became a canvas for a female artist to decorate. The spots, made of blue trade pigment, evoke a predator and thus convey symbolic power to the shirt’s owner. The artist embellished the shirt with fringe, trade beads, and embroidered panels of quillwork on horsehair.
Bernstein, Bruce, and Gerald McMaster, eds. First American Art: The Charles and Valerie Diker Collection of American Indian Art. Washington, DC: National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, 2004, no. 111, p. 161.

Penney, David W. Indigenous Beauty: Masterworks of American Indian Art from the Diker Collection. New York: Skira, 2015, no. 79, p.138.