Wah-kón-ze-kaw, The Snake

  • George Catlin, Wah-kón-ze-kaw, The Snake, 1828, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.213

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Before he began his extensive travels in the West, George Catlin found his first Indian subjects in the East. Nine members of a Winnebago delegation from present-day Wisconsin sat for him in Washington, D.C., in 1828. Catlin wrote that he had painted the portraits of “Won-de-tow-a (the wonder), Wa-kon-chash-kaw (he who comes on the thunder), Nau-naw-pay-ee (the soldier), Span-e-o-nee-kaw (the Spaniard) Hoo-wan-ee-kaw (the little elk), No-ah-choo-she-kaw (he who breaks the bushes), and Naugh-haigh-ke-kaw (he who moistens the wood), all distinguished men of the tribe; and all at full length, as they will be seen standing in my Collection.” (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 52, 1841; reprint 1973)

Title
Wah-kón-ze-kaw, The Snake
Artist
Date
1828
On View
Not on view.
Dimensions
18 3/8 x 14 in. (46.8 x 35.5 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.

Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
Classifications
Keywords
  • Portrait male – Snake
  • Ethnic – Indian – Winnebago
Object Number
1985.66.213
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI