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In this period, which reached its height in the late 19th century, Inuit artisans created souvenirs for the crews of whaling ships and explorers. Modern Inuit art began in the late 1940s, when with the encouragement of the Canadian government they began to produce prints and serpentine sculptures for sale in the south.Greenlandic Inuit have a unique textile tradition intregrating skin-sewing, furs, and appliqué of small pieces of brightly dyed marine mammal organs in mosaic designs, called avittat. They have strong mask-making tradition and also are known for an art form called tupilaq or an "evil spirit object." Traditional art making practices thrive in the Ammassalik.From the 12th century onward, the Iroquois and nearby coastal tribes fashioned wampum from shells and string; these were mnemonic devices, currency, and records of treaties.
Both pictographs and petroglyphs are known as rock art.
The Yup'ik of Alaska have a long tradition of carving masks for use in shamanic rituals.
The production of bannerstones, Projectile point, Lithic reduction styles and pictographic cave paintings are some of the art that remains from this time period.
Belonging in the Lithic stage, the oldest known art in the Americas is a carved megafauna bone, possibly from a mammoth, etched with a profile of walking mammoth or mastodon that dates back to 11,000 BCE.
In North America, the Lithic stage or Paleo-Indian period is defined as approximately 18,000–8000 BCE.
The period from around 8000–800 BCE is generally referred to as the Archaic period.The anatomical correctness of the carving and the heavy mineralization of the bone indicate that the carving was made while mammoths and/or mastodons still lived in the area, more than 10,000 years ago.The southwestern United States and certain regions of the Andes have the highest concentration of pictographs (painted images) and Petroglyphs (carved images) from this period.Visual arts by indigenous peoples of the Americas encompasses the visual artistic traditions of the indigenous peoples of the Americas from ancient times to the present.These include works from South America, Mesoamerica, North America including Greenland, as well as Siberian Yup'ik peoples who have great cultural overlap with Native Alaskan Yup'iks.The art of the Haida, Tlingit, Heiltsuk, Tsimshian and other smaller tribes living in the coastal areas of Washington State, Oregon, and British Columbia, is characterized by an extremely complex stylistic vocabulary expressed mainly in the medium of woodcarving.