Mary and Gerard Calabaza Thunderbird Multi-Gemstone Inlay Bolo tie

Item No: 5486

$ 497.00

  • This multi-gemstone bolo tie handcrafted by Mary and Gerard Calabaza of Santo Domingo Pueblo is an exquisite statement piece for collectors of genuine Native American jewelry. The Calabaza’s have set jet, Kingman turquoise, jade, purple phosphosiderite, serpentine, apple coral using channel inlay in a traditional thunderbird design, cutting every gemstone and shell by hand. Skillfully blending traditional and contemporary elements, The Calabaza’s have crafted a vibrant modern representation of the fine art of Santo Domingo thunderbird jewelry.The thunderbird is a symbol closely associated with Native American culture. Though the history of the design is not clear, it is seen as a symbol of strength, fertility and abundance. An iconic piece that draws upon traditional Santo Domingo this versatile and symbolic bolo tie will become a staple of your wardrobe.
    • Bolo tie handcrafted by Mary and Gerard Calabaza (Santo Domingo Pueblo)
    • Sterling silver
    • Jet, Kingman turquoise, jade, purple phosphosiderite, serpentine and apple coral
    • Mosaic Inlay
    • Bolo tie measures 3-1/2” high x 3” wide on 37” black leather braided cord
    • Comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity

    Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care. For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.

  • Mary and Gerard Calabaza, jewelers from Santo Domingo Pueblo, are a husband and wife duo known for handcrafting exquisite heishi beads and creating beautiful statement necklaces in traditional and contemporary styles. Each piece they create is a unique work of art. Gerard learned the art of making heishi necklaces, from his parents, Pula and Delphanita Calabaza, at the age of 13. Mary learned jewelry and pottery making from her parents, as well, at the age of 12. She credits her mother for teaching her how to drill, grind and slice stones. Mary married into the Calabaza family and joined her husband in the family legacy of making high quality heishi necklace and jewelry.
  • The thunderbird is a symbol closely associated with Pueblo culture. Though the history of the design is not clear, it is seen as a symbol of strength, fertility and abundance. Santo Domingo artists are known for reviving and popularizing the thunderbird design in the early 1900s. When traditional materials were unavailable during the Great Depression, they turned to repurposed and found materials such as car batteries, records, and household plastics to create colorful necklaces with a thunderbird motif. Tourists were captivated by these handmade pieces and today thunderbird jewelry is a celebrated style among Santo Domingo artists and collectors of Native American art.
  • Mosaic inlay jewelry is a signature style of Santo Domingo jewelers. Artists create mosaic inlay by attaching tiny gemstone tiles to a shell base, forming colorful and unique patterns. The technique can be traced back to early forms of jewelry unearthed at Anasazi sites throughout the Southwest, and many artists model their inlay designs after these early artifacts. Angie Reano Owen is credited with reviving the tradition of inlaid jewelry in Santo Domingo Pueblo in the 1970s, and today Santo Domingo mosaic inlay is one of the jewelry styles most sought after by collectors of Native American art.

    Read our Native American Jewelry Collector's Guide.
  • At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we guarantee that your purchase is an original and authentic work handcrafted by Native American artists as defined by the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990. We ask our artists to complete an extensive certification process, providing a CIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood) card and other documentation of their Native American heritage. Our team of experts carefully inspects every product to guarantee it is handcrafted using traditional, sustainable processes and natural materials of only the highest quality. We record the place and date of each purchase and pride ourselves in paying a fair price that allows artists to make a living practicing their craft. Every work of handcrafted art comes with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by an artist or buyer. At a time when many commercially-made products are being sold as handcrafted Native American art, our in-depth purchase process allows us to guarantee the authenticity of every unique piece of fine art we offer. For more than 35 years, we have made it a priority to visit artists in their studio or home to purchase their latest handcrafted pieces and learn about their work. We have developed lasting relationships with artists, as well as dealers and collectors, and we take pride in being a trusted destination for fine Native American art.
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