The expense of authentic Native American art is a sign of its lasting value and the extraordinary amount of labor, care and detail that goes into each piece. Authentic Native American artworks are handcrafted and, in many cases, handmade. A handmade Navajo rug can take up to 400 hours to complete, a basket weaver may spend many afternoons along the river gathering willow for baskets, and a potter may spend days making clay from natural materials gathered on the Pueblo. These artists are using the finest materials available and traditional methods that have been lovingly passed down from generation to generation, sometimes for centuries. These pieces should be admired and valued as works of fine art as well as being recognized and valued for their vital role in preserving historic art forms. The Native American artists we partner with are full-time professional artists who are at the top of their field and whose pieces have a premium value in the market. Their work is part of public and private collections around the world and has taken home the highest honors at Native American art shows. The expense of Native American artwork is a sign that you are not purchasing imitation manufactured wares. It is a sign of its authenticity, beauty and lasting value.
The origin and authenticity of many Native American artworks can be determined by the artist’s signature or hallmark. If the artist has a significant body of work, you should be able to find examples of their hallmark online or in Native American art reference books. If the signature or hallmark is not clearly discernible, we recommend that you take your piece to a certified professional to have it authenticated. Browse our selection of Native American art reference books.
The Pueblo Pottery Mugs are designed by artists from New Mexico Pueblos and printed on imported ceramics.
There is a greater demand for representation of and by Pueblo culture and art than the amount of people who can afford original, handcrafted Native American pottery. The mugs are designed by Pueblo artists here in New Mexico, and printed on imported ceramics to provide Native American art lovers an affordable means of acquiring authentic pueblo pottery designs that they can use in their daily lives.
The Pueblo Pottery Mugs are designed by artists from New Mexico Pueblos. The artists were compensated with a high fair market price for the original, traditionally made pottery mug, plus receive royalties from each replica mug sold. Additionally, some of the proceeds from each mug – and everything else we sell – goes directly back to the 19 Pueblos.
Helen Bird of Santo Domingo Pueblo, one of our celebrated mug artists, had this to say of the mug creation and replication medium: “I just create pots as communication to the rest of the world, communicate my skill, my art. I’m 70 years old, and I can still do this. I make a pot, it’s going to go to a home, and it’s going to stay there unless it’s donated to a museum. But with this mug, it’s going to be in everybody’s kitchen, and my grandkids can say ‘My grandma made that.’ That’s something I can leave with them, for future generations to be inspired by.”
We recommend taking your artwork to a certified appraiser specializing in Native American arts and crafts to properly appraise and determine the value.
The term handmade is used to describe a piece that was made by hand from start to finish without any prefabricated materials. For example, a basket is considered handmade if the artist gathers and creates the materials from natural plant fibers, and a pot is considered handmade if the clay and pigments are made by hand from all natural materials. The term handcrafted is used to describe pieces that were constructed by hand using prefabricated materials or a combination of handmade and prefabricated materials. All jewelry is considered handcrafted since metals and gemstones are not gathered or created by the artist.
Natural gemstones have received no treatment other than cutting and polishing. Nearly all of the gemstones you see on Shumakolowa.com are natural. Gemstones that have an additional product added to it, such as epoxies or acrylic resins, are considered stabilized. Some gemstones are stabilized to prevent the stone from cracking during the lapidary process or after the gem has been cut. For extremely fine channel inlay, petit point and needle point work, stabilized gemstones must be used so they can be cut to such a small size without breaking. Dye stabilizing is a process where dyes and chemicals are infused into a stone by subjecting it to high pressure or soaking the material for a long period of time. Dyes are typically added to improve the appearance of a lower grade gemstone. You will not find any dye-stabilized gemstones at Shumakolowa Native Arts.
Reconstituted turquoise is natural or previously stabilized material that has been pulverized into a powder, soaked in binders and then pressed back into a solid block. Lapis, coral and other semi-precious gems can also be reconstituted. Reconstituted gemstones have a much lower value that natural or stabilized gemstones. Block turquoise is not real turquoise. It is a turquoise emulation made from plastic, ceramic, or other material. At Shumakolowa Native Arts we do not carry any reconstituted gemstones or block turquoise.
At the request of the artists we partner with, we do not share their personal contact information with collectors. Many of these artists have websites with information about how to contact them.
Please see our Size Guide for more information about resizing.
Please contact us for inquiries about custom orders.
We offer free standard shipping on every order of $100 or more that is shipped to an address in the continental United States. For more information about expedited and international shipping, please read our shipping policy.
We gladly accept returns of all items for a full refund or exchange within 30 days of original purchase. Find out more about returns and exchanges.
Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care.For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.
Yes. We offer a 30-day Workmanship Warranty free of charge. After 30 days, we offer repair service for a fee. Please not that all items cannot be repaired. Read more about our warranty and repairs.
Yes. We safeguard the confidentiality of your personal information using Secure Sockets Layer ("SSL") for all financial transactions through this site. We are PCI DSS Compliant, which means: The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is an information security standard for organizations that handle credit card and debit card information. Defined by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council, the standard was created to increase controls around credit card data to reduce credit card fraud via its exposure.