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A carved and painted wooden New Mexico Folk Art

black bear cub figure by Felipe Benito Archuleta,1985

This small New Mexico black bear cub by the renowned New Mexico folk artist, Felipe Benito Archuleta (1910-1991)

is absolutely delightful in every way, from his fiercely-cute face to his black and white muzzle, ears and paws and his bright-green glass marble eyes. This little fellow measures 20” in length from the tip of his nose to the end of his tail and he stands 12 1/2” in height at his tallest point. He measures approximately 6” in width at his widest point around the hips. He is in generally excellent original condition with a few paint scuffs and three missing wood teeth.

He is properly titled, signed and dated in black paint on his belly as follows: “1-18-1985 Black Bear by F.B.A.”,

a signature which specifically indicates that Felipe Archuleta made this piece entirely by himself with no assistance from his apprentices. Characteristically, Archuleta imbued this small bear with stylized visual touches and an especially charming, slightly fierce/slightly sweet “personality”. Archuleta also very perceptively and accurately captured that gawkiness of youth in that the cub hasn’t quite grown into his body.

We purchased this piece from its original owners who bought it from one of Felipe Archuleta’s longtime dealers;

The Shop Of The Rainbow Man in Santa Fe over 28 years ago in early 1987.

This bear carving is a wonderful and highly-expressive piece of historic New Mexico folk art from one of the most renowned American folk artists of the 20th Century whose unique and distinctive carved animal figures are held in important museum and private collections across the country and around the world.

Price $4,800

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