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An Old Man of Waiyám

Accession Number
1997/1.153

Title
An Old Man of Waiyám

Artist(s)
Edward S. Curtis

Artist Nationality
American (North American)

Object Creation Date
1910

Medium & Support
photogravure on paper

Dimensions
12 1/2 in x 9 7/16 in (31.75 cm x 23.97 cm);14 3/8 in x 19 7/16 in (36.51 cm x 49.37 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Stephen M. Taylor

Subject matter
This image of a man from the Yakima tribe—now known as Yakama—is from The North American Indian (1907 - 1930), a twenty-volume series created by Edward Curtis in order to document the lives of Native Americans in diverse regions of the Western United States. This limited edition volume was financially supported by J.P. Morgan, and promoted by Theodore Roosevelt. The resulting works have been criticized and celebrated for their portrayal of Native American life. Curtis often included anachronous props and clothing and presented rituals that had not been performed in years in order to support an idealized and romantic reading of a “vanishing race.”

Physical Description
A photograph of an aged man sitting and looking straight into the camera. He holds a large feather in his lap, his costume adorned with embroidery. He wears a large feather headdress on his head. He appears to be sitting in an enclosed area, with patterned cloths on the floor and hanging around him.

Primary Object Classification
Photograph

Collection Area
Photography

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
Native American
Yakima (culture or style)
costume (mode of fashion)
costumes
feathers
headdress
men (male humans)
modern and contemporary art
seated
single-sitter portraits