Object photography

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Object description

  • Barbara D. Francis (Penobscot, birth 1957)
  • Basket, 2005
  • Sweet grass, ash
  • Maine, northeast, United States
  • H: 9 1/2 in, dia.: 10 in (H: 24.1 cm, dia.: 25.4 cm)
  • Gift of Merry Glosband, 2005
  • E302704.AB
  • Continues tradition of Native Maine artists weaving baskets for outside sale
  • Features basketry curls originally added to please non-Native customers

For over 200 years, Penobscot artists have sold decorative and utilitarian bakets to both tourists and Maine residents. In the 19th century, Native weavers began adding fancy basketry curls to please patrons. In this contemporary basket, Barbara Francis has updated the design by enlarging the form.


This round basket and its cover are woven with ash splints and the rim of both the basket and the cover are formed with tightly wrapped sweet grass. The top of the cover is ornamented with a peacock tailfeather-like handle. The basket is elaborately woven by twisting the ash splints, creating decorative vertical lines up the body of the object.

Exhibition History

  • Intersections, Native American Art in a New Light, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA.; June 24, 2006 through November 27, 2011


Barbara D. Francis