A beaded hide tobacco bag from the Sioux Elk Dreamer Society (Lot 182) sold for an auction record of $131,250 against a presale estimate of $50,000-$60,000 in Cowan’s September 18 American Indian Art Auction. The bag was the most anticipated lot from the collection of long-time respected dealer Robert Jerich.
“I have known Mr. Jerich for the entirety of my career and while we have crossed paths many times, it was a joy to finally get to work together with him to bring so many remarkable pieces to market,” said Farnand. “The second I was able to examine this bag I knew that there was nothing that could compare to it. Clearly, buyers agreed with me.”
The late-19th century bag is sinew-sewn and beaded in colors of navy blue, light green, candy apple red white-heart, pink red white-heart, greasy blue, greasy yellow, translucent red, light pink, faceted brass, light blue, black, and white. One side of the bag depicts a warrior dressed in a feathered bonnet holding a staff, a warrior on horseback, and two pipes. The opposite side also depicts two brightly colored pipes, along with a spotted elk with “power lines,” and the Elk Dancer with hoop and staff.