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puggutaq “bowl, dish, plate”
Language: Qawiaraq Iñupiaq

I have one of these [a curved carving knife] at home that belonged to my dad…I’ve seen my dad making bowls and berry buckets.

—Oscar Koutchak, 2001

This ceremonial bowl was used for serving food at festivals and feasts. The bottom is a solid piece of wood and the rim is a separate piece that was softened with hot water or steam and then bent into its finished oval shape. The decorative inlays were carved from a soft white stone. Each person owned a smaller eating bowl, which was often placed on his or her grave after death. Carvers used knives with curved metal blades to shape them.

Culture: Iñupiaq
Region: Norton Sound, Alaska
Village: Unalakleet
Object Category: Ceremony
Dimensions: Length 40cm
Accession Date: 1928
Museum: National Museum of the American Indian
Museum ID Number: 162229.000