in Native American Jewelry
in Native American Jewelry
by Edward S Curtis 1908
Even today incredible skill and craftsmanship passed down through generations of family members, goes into each piece to create beautiful jewelry with the timeless traditional designs that are so recognizable.
Due to the rarity of natural green turquoise, many contemporary artists are using Gaspeite in their jewelry. Gaspeite is a rare mineral resembling green turquoise in appearance.
The cuff is Royston turquoise; the ring is Ciraco Lake turquoise and the inset cuff is Northern Lights turquoise. The necklace is Gaspeite by an unknown artist.
The iridescence of the opals emphasizes the slivers of 14K gold in earrings by Thomas Barbre.
Lapis is a harder stone, and takes a very nice shine when polished. The highest quality stones have a blue to purplish-blue hue and an even color.
Most pearls are irregular and discolored, but there are some that are spherical and perfectly white. These are what are most commonly found on the elegant strands of dress pearls.
However, the very rare, highly prized Tahitian Black Pearl is finding its way into Native American jewelry. These pearls come only from the black lip oyster around the waters of Tahiti, and are very versatile in jewelry settings.
that the best coral comes
from the deep waters of the
Mediterranean. The deeper
the water, the more rich and
vibrant the deep red color becomes.
Unfortunately, the demand for deep
water Mediterranean coral has
resulted in a dramatically depleted
supply, and this has resulted in dyed
substitutes being sold in the market as
He honors his parents in his jewelry designs – his father with the sterling silver jewelry and his mother by incorporating the designs of the rugs she wove.
An even newer and more difficult technique is that of micro-inlay. The gemstones are cut in very thin, precise slices and stacked together, often to create a picture or tell a story. This technique takes very steady hands and nerves of steel.
The surfaces of the stones are not flat across, creating interesting dimension and contrasts of the different gemstones utilized. Often, the stones are fitted at angles to each other, similar to a courtyard stone pattern.
A similar inlay pattern called cornrow has the stone pieces all laid in parallel, like corn kernels on a cob. The edges of each stone are usually rounded.
The artist begins with two lava (tufa) stones. The stones form the opposite sides of the mold. The stones are carved into the shape and pattern desired by the artist, and then bound together. The molten silver is poured into the mold and allowed to cool. When cooled, the mold is separated and the casting is removed. The artist then polishes the portions of the casting that should be polished, and leaves the rough tufa impression on the remainder.
Each artist strives to blend the traditional motifs and patterns of their culture with a new, innovative look. They are telling a story of the evolution of their cultures with their art, in addition to creating stunning jewelry.
Unlike traditional Native American jewelry, these unique designs fit into almost any ensemble or style, and are not identified as solely Native American in style.
The swirls and circles ever reminiscent of the importance of water.
If you wish to acquire any of the jewelry featured in this exhibition, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please fee free to let your friends know about this Exhibition, which will run as a Featured
Exhibition on The Dancing Rabbit Gallery website, www.thedancingrabbitgallery.com,
through the end of September, 2021.
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