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Fancy Basket

Contributed by Abbe Museum

This elaborate basket is covered in curly or periwinkle curls, and was once brightly colored. Anne Molloy Howells describes finding this basket in a letter to Gaby Pelletier in 1975:
"Paul wasn’t able to do Christmas shopping this year. I solved his problem as far as I’m concerned by leading him to an antique show at the Portsmouth Armory. While he sat and chatted with dealers I whisked from booth to booth looking at baskets. Finally I narrowed it down to 2, quite dizzy by that time… The other [basket] is the most preposterous I ever saw and of course it caught my eye as I stepped in the door. It is round with a domed cover and all except for a small area at the cover’s top decorated with warts or shells…It once had purple and yellow coloring but now gives the impression of a great cone or a hedgehog and in its mass made me think of Olmec heads from Middle America."

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Other Information

  • Title: Fancy Basket
  • Town: Portsmouth
  • State: NH
  • Media: ash, dye
  • Dimensions: 40 cm x 35.5 cm
  • Local Code: AM392
  • Collection: Anne Molloy Howells Collection
  • Object Type: Physical Object

For more information about this item, contact:

Abbe Museum
26 Mount Desert Street, PO Box 286, Bar Harbor, ME 04609
(207) 288-3519

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