Charles Edenshaw (Haida, Native American, 1834-1924). <em>Headdress Frontlet</em>, late 19th century. Abalone shell, wood, pigment, 6 1/8 x 5 1/2 x 3 in. (15.6 x 14 x 7.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Helena Rubinstein, 50.158. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 50.158_PS1.jpg)

Headdress Frontlet

Artist:Charles EdenshawHaida

Medium: Abalone shell, wood, pigment

Geograhical Locations:

Dates:late 19th century

Dimensions: 6 1/8 x 5 1/2 x 3 in. (15.6 x 14 x 7.6 cm)


Accession Number: 50.158

Image: 50.158_PS1.jpg,

Catalogue Description:
Headdress frontlet with a carved bear that can be identified by the depth of its eye sockets and the way its eyes are carved. The Bear appears to be overpowering an insect that has a segmented body and wings behind its head. Framing the carving along the sides and across the top are inset rectangles of abalone shell. Also inset with abalone are the bear's eyes, teeth and paws. The animal's face is blue-green with thick black outlined ears and heavy eyebrows. Its nose, mouth, and torso are red. The proper left edge of the frontlet was repaired and the wood backing for the abalone shell in this area was probably replaced. The object is in good condition. The frontlet might have been hollowed out at the thickest part of the piece behind the face to prevent splitting. The blue-green color is frequently used among the Tlingit while defined eye sockets are frequently indicated by the Haida. Some pieces of abalone shell in this piece are lighter and pinker than other bluer pieces and these pinker pieces may have been replacement pieces for the original blue inlays.

Brooklyn Museum Logo