Inlaid stylized kachina on the left side.
Paula says - "In my opinion, this wonderful bear shows all the design characteristics and workmanship of being Native American made. But because we are unable to attribute the signature SIM to a specific artist we can't legally sell it as Native American made - read more."
Inlaid heart line on the right side.
What is a Fetish?
A fetish is a rock carving of an animal that captures the spirit and the essence of the animal, not necessarily its exact detailed conformation. Read more about fetishes.
Indian Bear Symbolism
Bear is considered the most powerful of all of the animals and is one of the most popular subjects of fetish carvers. Bear is a spiritual guide and represents strength and self-knowledge. He also has supernatural powers, great healing powers. Bear is a symbol deliberate action, introspection, soul and insight for the past and the future. The Bear is the guardian of the West an is one of the animals of the Six Directions.
What Does a Heart Line Represent?
The heart line is a line etched, painted or inlaid along one or both sides of the animal. It usually extends from the mouth to the region of the heart. There are many interpretations as to what a heart line represents, but it is often said to represent the pathway of the breath of the animal to the life force which is the heart. Others feel that the heart line points to the soul of the animal. It is thought that a heart line gives the fetish healing or medicinal power.
The US Department of the Interior Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990 and its recent Amendments require that items described as Native American or Indian be made by an enrolled member of a federally recognized tribe. Furthermore, government regulations suggest that all attributions include the Native American Indian's name, tribe and federal tribal enrollment number. Because it is impossible to identify the artist for many vintage items, even if they are authentic Indian made items, we cannot and will not use the words Native American or Indian in association with such pieces.