Helm Auction expects heated bidding for Native American art July 7

Native American

Oil on canvas figural landscape by the Latvian-born German painter Johann Valters-Walter Kurau (1869-1932), in a gold gilt frame, 62½ in. x 61½ in. Estimate: $50,000-$100,000. Helm Auction image

EL CAJON, Calif. – Helms Auction Inc.’s Tribal & Native American Summer Shindig planned for Saturday, July 7, is packed with over 460 lots of Navajo weavings and Pueblo pottery; pre-Columbian artifacts; prehistoric arrowheads and other stone tools; Oceanic, African and Chinese tribal artifacts; 20th-century Native American and Mexican jewelry items and more. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.

The online-only auction will begin at 1:15 p.m. Eastern time/4:15 Pacific.

“With the many fine items throughout the catalog, we’re encouraging folks to bid early and bid often so they don’t miss out,” said Helm Auction owner Diane Harvey.

With a presale estimate of $50,000-$100,000, an original oil on canvas figural landscape by the Latvian-born German painter Johann Valters-Walter Kurau (1869-1932) is a strong candidate for top lot of the auction. The painting (above), housed in a gilt frame measuring 62½ inches by 61½ inches, was rendered circa 1900 and signed in Cyrillic (customary for Latvian artists) by Valters.

Native American

Horse headstall made in New Mexico around 1940 from leather, steel and sterling silver, with a steer design across the bridle top. Estimate: $4,000-$8,000. Helm Auction image

Also expected to attract interest are a horse headstall made in New Mexico around 1940 from leather, steel and sterling silver, with a steer design across the bridle top (est. $4,000-$8,000); and a pre-Columbian bird figure with a parrot-like face, made in Costa Rica, 15¾ inches tall on a custom stand (est. $3,000-$5,000).

Native American

Pre-Columbian bird figure with a parrot-like face, large eyes and a three-stepped feathered crest, Costa Rica, 15¾ in. on a custom heavy metal stand. Estimate: $3,000-$5,000. Helm Auction image

A circa 1930s Chemehuevi basket, produced from willow and devil’s claw and made in the Mojave Desert, measures 8 inches by 7 inches and is a museum-quality piece (est. $3,000-$6,000).

Native American

Circa 1930s Chemehuevi basket, produced from willow and devil’s claw and made in the Mojave Desert, 8 inches by 7 inches. Estimate: $3,000-$6,000. Helm Auction image

A transitional Navajo wool weaving made in New Mexico in the 1890s, boasting multiple colors and 95½ inches by 70 inches, should bring $3,500-$7,000.

Native American

Transitional Navajo weaving made of wool and dye in New Mexico in the 1890s, 95½ in x 70 in. Estimate: $3,500-$7,000. Helm Auction image

A large pre-Columbian Mezcala two-tier temple, made of granite around 500 B.C. in Guerrero, Mexico, and at 12 inches tall one of the largest seen, carries a robust estimate of $5,000-$10,000. Older still, a circa 800 B.C. Olmec male figure made of green jadeite stone, was crafted in Veracruz, Mexico, and stands 7½ inches tall. It should gavel for $2,500-$5,000.

A large early Blackfoot Indian parfleche case-cylinder, made of hide in the 1860s or 1870s, has top and bottom discs present, old natural pigments and measures 24 inches by 8 inches (est. $1,250-$2,500). A prehistoric Chumash carved whale figure made of steatite and shell inlay, 5¼ inches tall and discovered in Santa Barbara, California, should reach $500-$1,500.

Rounding out just some of the auction’s expected highlights is an antique Chinese Qing dynasty cabinet-hutch, around 140 years old, made of wood and 43¼ inches tall (est. $1,500-$3,000).

Previews are by appointment only and can be made by emailing Helm Auction, at admin@helmauction.com or by calling 619-440-0320.

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