A bear fetish, carved in the traditional way, by members of the Gasper family, probably Dinah, and the late Pete Gasper, Sr.
The piece is unmarked, but that tail is both unusual, and a signature of these celebrated carvers. It might be by one of their children, but there is no way to tell, really.
The Gaspers are descendants of the legendary Teddy Weahkee, a major carver of the twentieth century. Lena Boone is one of his daughters; Dinah Gasper is another.
This bear is longer and leaner than some, but that is a family style, along with the fat, round, and etched tail.
Bears are important animals, both Guardians of the West, and revered protective and healing animals, for the Zuni.
Their size, strength and hunting prowess are all attributes leading to their role.
This old-style, i.e., barely detailed, fetish bear sports a bright arrowhead of spiny oyster shell, and other stone and shell beads, in his medicine bundle.
This points the way for his powers to find their destination.
A real piece of Zuni and carving history, this bear will guard and protect your home without a single growl.