Fossil Ivory Bird Carving by Thomas Antoghame


The late Yupik artist Thomas Antoghame from Gambell masterfully carved this exquisite fossil ivory bird on a matching base. Specifically, the bird’s dimensions are:

  • Height: 2.4 inches
  • Width: 0.8 inches
  • Depth: 1.8 inches

Moreover, Thomas Antoghame signed the base of this unique piece. Priced at $275, it is available for sale exclusively within the United States.

Craftsmanship and Tradition

Yupik artists have long been renowned for their intricate walrus ivory carvings. In particular, the communities of Gambell and Savoonga on the St. Lawrence Island have a rich tradition of creating these detailed artworks.

Cultural Significance

The Yupik people primarily inhabit the villages of Gambell and Savoonga on the St. Lawrence Island. Notably, this island lies off the Northwest coast of Alaska, just 32 miles from the Siberian coast in the Bering Sea. With a total population of fewer than 1,500 people, these villages are famed for their skilled ivory carvers. Additionally, some Yupik live near the Bering Sea on the mainland coast of Alaska.

Utilization of Walruses

Walruses play a crucial role in the lives of Alaska Native communities, providing essential nutritional and cultural resources. The meat, blubber, skin, and organs of the walrus offer a rich food source. Furthermore, they process the hides to cover boats and carve the tusks into intricate ivory artworks. These carvings not only preserve cultural heritage but also provide income when sold to collectors.

Purchase Information

For more details and to purchase this carving, visit Tribal Crafts.

To learn more about the Yupik ivory carvers, you can explore the book “Savoonga Ivory Carvers” available on Amazon.


  • Artist: Thomas Antoghame
  • Material: Fossil Ivory
  • Dimensions: 2.4″ high, 0.8″ wide, 1.8″ deep
  • Price: $275 (US sale only)
  • Cultural Context: Created by Yupik artist from Gambell, highlighting the importance of walrus ivory carvings in Yupik tradition and economy.

Ultimately, this piece is not only a beautiful work of art but also a testament to the rich cultural heritage of the Yupik people.

fossil ivory bird

Thomas Antoghame   Yupik

Fossil ivory bird

Fossil  ivory & baleen – 0.8 x 1.8 x 2.4 inches (bird only)