Handcrafted by skilled Ho-chunk artisan and woodworker Ira Funmaker, this pentatonically scaled cedar flute is a lightweight and sturdy instrument that you’ll enjoy carrying with you. The flute’s block is in the shape of a bear, an animal that represents strength and wisdom in Native American cultures. The Native American flute is known around the world for its haunting, plaintive sound and is said to bring a sense of tranquility to musicians and listeners alike. An excellent choice for both experienced and novice musicians, this flute will connect you to a vibrant tradition and inspire balance and creativity in your life.
- Flute handcrafted by Ira Funmaker (Ho-chunk)
- Pentatonic flute
- Light brown cedar
- Rawhide lace
- Flute measures 21” x 2-1/2” x 1-1/8”
- Comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity
Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care. For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.
Ira Funmaker is a Ho-chunk flute maker and artisan from Wisconsin who now resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Funmaker learned the art of flute-making from a medicine man and is also a skilled woodworker. Known for the quality of his instruments, he creates flutes from a variety of woods and in a range of styles.
Native American cultures have been making instruments since ancient times, including flutes, whistles, rattles and drums. Instruments often play a role in traditional ceremonies that serve as prayers for blessings and rain, and are also seen as tools of healing and a means of connecting with one’s environment. The flute in particular is seen as an instrument that brings balance and tranquility and provides a time for reflection, both for the musician and those listening. Flutes are also an instrument of courtship in some Native American cultures.
Known for its distinctive sound, the Native American flute produces music that is plaintive, soulful and haunting. Native Americans have been making flutes for thousands of years. Anasazi flutes made of bone and wood have been dated to as early as 700 A.D. Today Native American flutes are made from cane, hardwood or soft wood. The Plains style wood flute is the most commonly made and used type of Native American flute and is what most people associate with the form. Most Native American flutes have an air chamber that is separate from the sound chamber, making them one of the easiest flutes to play and an excellent choice for novice flute musicians. Fingering and voicing varies widely between flutes as artists are interested in creating a unique sound rather than a standard instrument. In the last three decades, Native American flute music has gained a large audience, propelled in large part by the work of R. Carlos Nakai, a Grammy award-winning flute musician of Navajo and Ute descent. Today, flute music connects both musicians and audiences to an ancient art form and the creativity and evolving traditions of Native American cultures.Read our Native American Instruments Collector's Guide.
At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we guarantee that your purchase is an original and authentic work handcrafted by Native American artists as defined by the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990. We ask our artists to complete an extensive certification process, providing a CIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood) card and other documentation of their Native American heritage. Our team of experts carefully inspects every product to guarantee it is handcrafted using traditional, sustainable processes and natural materials of only the highest quality. We record the place and date of each purchase and pride ourselves in paying a fair price that allows artists to make a living practicing their craft. Every work of handcrafted art comes with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by an artist or buyer. At a time when many commercially-made products are being sold as handcrafted Native American art, our in-depth purchase process allows us to guarantee the authenticity of every unique piece of fine art we offer. For more than 35 years, we have made it a priority to visit artists in their studio or home to purchase their latest handcrafted pieces and learn about their work. We have developed lasting relationships with artists, as well as dealers and collectors, and we take pride in being a trusted destination for fine Native American art.