Vintage Brant Decoy - Signed NICK SAPONE
- Vintage item
Just eight years after he made his first decoy, Nick Sapone was invited in 1988 to demonstrate his hand crafting of decoys at the Smithsonian in Washington. His specialty is hunting decoys made in the traditional canvas style of the Outer Banks in North Carolina; Sapone has his workshop there in Wanchese.
He makes a decoy like this one by using a solid wood head, neck and base. Over a framework of steel wire, Sapone stretches canvas and rivets it to the base. He then hand paints the decoy and waterproofs it. This a challenging craft, which Sapone says he learned by taking apart old ones and putting them back together. He has mastered decoy making, winning many blue ribbons and second place in the Ward World Championship Wildfowl Carving Competition.
This is a small goose called a Brant. It has a short bill, a short neck with white markings on each side and black glass eyes. This Brant is nearly life-size at 19 inches long and weighs 2 pounds 6 ounces, about average for a real Brant. It stands 8 inches to the top of its head and is 6 1/2 inches wide, measured on the bottom across the breast.
This decoy is beautifully painted and in excellent condition, with a shallow dent to the upper right side of the tail (shown in photo #9) the only sign of wear. The black painted wooden bottom is signed with the handwritten "Nick Sapone Wanchese, N.C." next to his stamped initials in block letters. Although a fully functional decoy, this Brant makes a handsome display bird. also.
Here's a link to a great video featuring Nick Sapone demonstrating how he makes his decoys: