Over the millennia, knives have evolved from sharpened stones to crude instruments with handles for easy grasping, to efficient and deadly weapons. Knives although functional, are sometimes a beautiful piece of art.
This is a very special beautiful knife by Dan Vallo of Acoma. Over the past two decades, Dan has taken the simple form of a knife and elevated it with inlaid turquoise, carved wood and antler handles, and blades of Obsidian. His blades are created using an ancient technique known as flint knapping, which he learned by watching his father Henry Vallo, an accomplished silversmith, and by experimenting on small blades and tools. His inspiration comes from old arrowheads and tools found on the Acoma pueblo lands where he grew up.
This knife has a hand knapped blade made from zebra agate, which must be heated to 500+ degrees for 24 hours to allow it to be knapped. The handle is made of Russian olive wood, harvested, cured and shaped. The process takes over a year to ensure proper drying without splitting the wood. Small worm holes and tracks in the handle are cleaned and filled with Kingman turquoise. The display stand is Elm wood filled with turquoise in the natural grain of the wood. Dan says, ” I call this knife “Upstream”. The grain pattern mimics a stream flowing down the mountains into a small lake with a big black rock island. The knot hole which is filled with yellow pigment, represents the sun over the mountains.”
Condition: Excellent – original condition – new.
Provenance: Purchased from the artist.