Home Biography About My Work Recent Work Archives Galleries Contact

This section is devoted to pieces that were done for private collections, prize winners in competitions, or are unusual in theme and composition.







This is one of the most interesting pieces of ivory I have scrimshawed.  It is cut from a mammoth tusk at the end that attaches to the jaw.  Usually the mammoth tusk is cut up into different size pieces and then prepared for scrimshaw.  This one was kept as a whole section and a "window" was cut through the outer rind of the tusk down to the ivory and polished for an area suitable to be worked on.  The owner of the ivory then commissioned me to scrimshaw this scene with eagles on it.

8 5/8" X 7" X 6" (overall ivory size)

4"X 5" (scrimshaw area)

These pieces are images taken from the work of the 19th century Japanese ukiyo-e artist Hiroshegi.  I think the style of these wood block prints also works very nicely in scrimshaw on ivory.  The one on the left is done on a piece of fossil walrus ivory and is from the print titled "Falcon on a Pine with the Rising Sun".  The piece on the right is taken from two of his prints of the Satta Passand is scrimshawed on a cabochon of mammoth ivory.

Falcon - 47/8" X 1 3/4" X 7/8"

Satta Pass - 3 3/8" X 1 1/2" X 1/2"


This beautiful folding knife made by Kevin Casey with Damascus blade and bolster was one in a series of knives to be scrimshawed with western themes.  A stagecoach hold -up and buffalo hunt were chosen for this one I scrimshawed them on the mammoth ivory scales.  I drew inspiration from the works of Charles M Russell and Frank McCarthy, two of my favorite western artists.

1" X 3" (ivory size)


This is a detail from the Diego Rivera fresco "La Gran Tenochtitlan" scrimshawed on a slab cut from an antique walrus ivory tusk.  The stand was made by Ken Fredericks from rosewood with antique walrus ivory, fossil walrus ivory and malachite inlay.

2 1/4" X 2 3/4" X 7/16" (ivory size)

The owner of this large sperm whale tooth commissioned me to scrimshaw a scene inspired by the 1956 movie of Herman Melville's "Moby Dick".  Supporting himself by standing on a harpoon imbedded in the whale's flank and tangled in the harpoon lines, Ahab furiously strikes at Moby Dick.  I tried to capture the character of the paintings of whaling scenes that were being painted around the him Melville was writing his novel.  The stand was made by Roger Cash.

3 1/4" X 9 1/4" X 2" (ivory size)

These leopards are scrimshawed on the tip of a mammoth tusk cut at about 14 inches and then lengthwise down the middle - a very unusual piece of fossil ivory.  The stand was made by Roger Cash.

2 2/8" X 13 1/2" X 1 3/8"


This piece was scrimshawed on a large flat slab of antique ivory that fits on the lid of a jewelry box.  Mount Kilimanjaro looms in the distance.

4" X 6 1/2" X 3/16"

This globe is done on one of the larger ivory billiard balls I have worked on.  I used a map drawn for the United States Fisheries Commission by A. Howard Clarke in the 1850's delineating the whaling grounds of the world.  I took advantage of the size of the ivory to insert images from old whaling prints.

2 1/4 " diameter 

"Catching a Break", scrimmed on a fossil walrus tusk with a Ken Fredericks mount.

2" X 8 1/2" X 1 1/4" (ivory 

"The Hazards of the Whale Fisheries" was commissioned by the owner of this sperm whale tooth residing in Washington state.  It is a composite of several 19th century engravings as well as my own imagination.  Mount by Ken Fredericks.

3" X 7


This scene on a piece of mammoth ivory depicts a black jaguar standing on ancient Mayan inscriptions carved in stone with the ruins of a temple in the background, drawn from the work of Frederick Catherwood (one of the first westerners to view these Mayan sites and to document them in sketches and engravings in the early 19th Century).  The beautiful wood mount with inlay is made by Ken Fredericks.

6" X 5" X 2 1/2" 

This piece was done for a collector of scrimshaw that I have worked with over the years on several projects.  It was his idea to do a scrimshaw commemorating Christopher Columbus'  voyage on this large strip of mammoth ivory that he got on a trip to Alaska.  The wood base is made from pheasant wood by Roger Cash.

3' to 1 3/4' X 19" (ivory dimensions) 

"Samurai" was my entry for the 1997 International Hawaiian Scrimshaw Competition and first place winner in the "open" category for best unique scene.  This event was hosted by the Ye Olde Ship Store on Kauai for six years from 1996 till 2001 and gathered together some of the best work from scrimshaw artists around the world.  It is done on a beautiful piece of mammoth ivory with a Ken Fredericks stand (as are the next three).

4 1/2 " X 3 1/4 " (ivory)

This was my entry for the 1999 International Hawaiian Scrimshaw Competition and won first place in the color nautical category.  It shows Sir Francis Drake's ship the "Golden Hinde"  along with a 1590 Hondius double hemisphere map  showing the route he traveled circling the globe from 1577 to 1580.  It is done on a fossil walrus ice adze. 

2 3/4"X 12" (approx>) 

"The Franklin Expedition" was my entry for the 2002 International  Marine Art Exhibition at the Maritime Gallery at Mystic Seaport.  It won one of the five "awards of excellence" awarded that year.  It commemorates the ill fated expedition of Sir John Franklin in 1845 to find the Northwest Passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific.  It is done on a fossil walrus tusk.

3" X 16 1/4" X 3

This was my entry for the last International Hawaiian Scrimshaw Competition in 2001 and won first place in the open category that year - it is done on a piece of mammoth ivory.  Scrimshaw is the ideal medium to explore the intricate detail of the headdresses and decoration worn by the tribes of the plains. 

4" X 3" (approx.)

This scene scrimshawed on a full antique walrus tusk was commissioned by a private collector.  It is one of the most extensive compositions I have ever put together, inspired and influenced by the paintings of Frank McCarthy. 

3" X 20 " (approx.) 

 loved looking at the Kachina carvings that I saw as a boy in the shops in Santa Fe.  The different designs and personalities of the spirits they represented were fascinating to me.  Later, I was fortunate to observe the Shalako dances preformed at the Zuni pueblo by costumed Kachinas.  This scrimshaw on a fossil walrus ice adze depicts the Hopi Eagle Kachina with the Walpi pueblo and kiva in the near  background.

2 3/4" X  15" (approx.) 


A bison hunt offers an exciting and dynamic subject to try to convey through scrimshaw.  These two pieces are not my only attempts but probably my most successful. The top is influenced by the paintings of Frank McCarthy and the bottom one from paintings by Charles Russell.  Both pieces are done on fossil walrus ivory.

As with the "Warrior of the Plains", scrimshaw is an ideal medium to explore the intricate detail of the headdresses and decoration worn by the tribes of the plains.  This piece is done on fossil walrus ivory.
Perhaps more appropriate to the medium of scrimshaw and the ivory we do it on,  the native cultures of the Arctic are also a fascinating subject.  These pieces are a small sampling  of some of the many I have done over the years with this in mind. 
I have done several large compositions on fossil walrus tusks with Civil War themes.  This one depicts scenes of the battle of Gettysburg.

A long time collector of my work made a surprise visit to my studio one day and saw that I was working on one of the old world globes.  He looked at it a while and I thought he was about to say "I want one of those" when he instead said "Could you make a baseball out of that?"  So we collaborated and came up with the idea of scrimming on the stitching of the ball and putting portraits of four of his favorite players around it along with the team insignias.  Ken Fredericks finished up the project with the perfect mount including ivory panels for the players signatures.

2 1/4" dia (approx.) 

Copyright  2016-2017 M. Stothart, all rights reserved