Charles Bird King's Portraits of Native Americans
June 25, 2008 12:56 PM   Subscribe

"It's somewhat fitting that a man named Charles Bird King--a name both eminently European yet vaguely Amerindian--would depict the natives of the American East (Creek, Crow, Seminole, Cherokee, Choctaw, Iowa, Fox, Winnebago, etc) at a time when there was a semblance of parity (parody of parity?) between the Old and New Worlds. This was expressed in the dress of natives as well as many whites who lived among them: European brass gorgets and artfully knotted cravats around the neck of a men with painted faces and feathers in their hair. The synthesis is breathtaking: both fierce and fey. It's a damn pity the European influence eventually crushed the Native--this could very well have become our national mode of dress." Lord Whimsy.
posted by vronsky (8 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Yankee doodle came to town a riding on a pony
Stuck a feather in his cap and called it maccaroni
posted by Ironmouth at 1:03 PM on June 25, 2008

Is this the same Lord Whimsy that used to write for the Philadelphia Independent?
posted by Mister_A at 1:34 PM on June 25, 2008

I believe it is Mister_A, although I am only familiar with his (excellent) Live Journal. A lot of things he posts there are Philly-centric.
posted by vronsky at 2:12 PM on June 25, 2008

this could very well have become our national mode of dress.

Adam Ant would agree.
posted by zippy at 2:21 PM on June 25, 2008

Oops, meant to add the wiki.
posted by vronsky at 3:51 PM on June 25, 2008

These guys looked totally cool.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:11 PM on June 25, 2008

I would think someone named Charles Bird King would be a totally awesome jazz musician.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:12 PM on June 25, 2008

Wow, I guess medallion/cameo pendants were really popular around then, huh.

[this, as they say, is good]
posted by hattifattener at 7:31 PM on June 25, 2008

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