The Seattle Art Museum is modifying its friendly Super Bowl bet with the Denver Art Museum after objections from a British Columbia First Nations band.
The director of the Seattle museum, Kimerly Rorshchach, said Wednesday the Nuxalk Nation asked it to withdraw the offer of a raven mask, and it's doing so in respect for their wishes. The band at Bella Coola, B.C. says the mask is a sacred ceremonial item.
"We have the greatest respect for the Nuxalk’s art and culture and intended the Forehead Mask to be a cultural exchange with the Denver region," Rorschach said in a statement.
"The Nuxalk Nation asked us to withdraw the offer in conjunction with the Super Bowl and we are doing so in respect for their wishes."
In its place, the Seattle Art Museum is offering Sound of Waves, a six-panelled, 1901 Japanese painted screen by Tsuji Kako depicting an eagle on a seashore.
The Denver museum is putting up The Broncho Buster, a Frederic Remington bronze of a cowboy on a bucking bronco.
"Sound of Waves is a masterpiece from our great Japanese art collection and a reflection of Seattle’s close connection to Asia," said Rorschach. "But we are still confident that The Bronco Buster will be heading to Seattle."
The museum in the city losing Sunday's Seahawks-Broncos football game will send art to the winning city for a three-month exhibit.