Ball-play of the Choctaw--Ball Up
1846-1850 George Catlin Born: Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 1796 Died: Jersey City, New Jersey 1872 oil on canvas 25 3/4 x 32 in. (65.4 x 81.4 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr. 1985.66.428A Not currently on view
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In 1834, George Catlin witnessed Choctaw lacrosse in Indian Territory near present-day Oklahoma, and was captivated by the game. He described ball-play as “a school for the painter or sculptor, equal to any of those which ever inspired the hand of the artist in the Olympian games or the Roman forum.” Lacrosse, which involved a no-holds-barred struggle for the ball, was a physical, even violent, game called “little brother of war” in Choctaw.
Architecture Exterior - domestic - teepee
Ethnic - Indian - Choctaw
Recreation - sport and play - ball
paint - oil
fabric - canvas
metal - aluminum - support added
About George Catlin
Born: Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 1796 Died: Jersey City, New Jersey 1872
More works in the collection by
- George Catlin and His Indian Gallery / American Art
- George Catlin's Indian Gallery / American Art
- Exhibitions / American Art
- Online Exhibitions / Smithsonian American Art Museum
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