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Shirt

Ute shirt
ca. 1870–1880
Colorado or Utah
Wool cloth, hide, glass beads, linen thread
69 x 162 cm
Purchase
21/1222

One of the first horse cultures of the West, the Ute people traded horses from the Southwest north into the central Plains and Plateau. Their arts reflect their lifestyle. They freely adopted from the tribes they encountered, as seen in this man’s red wool trade-cloth shirt, ornamented with buckskin fringe and wide bands of lazy-stitch beadwork. The wide, beaded strips resemble Central and Northern Plains styles of beadwork, especially those of Lakota people, while the geometric patterning within and around the neckpiece uses colors similar to those used by tribes just west of the Rocky Mountains.

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