Zuni Ironwood Box with Silver and Turquoise Thunderbird

Artist: Once Known
Dimensions: 12”L x 8”W x 2”H
Tribe: Zuni
Stone: Natural Turquoise
Material: Ironwood and Turquoise

As seen in Elegant Vessels: A century of southwest silver boxes (Page 130 & 131)

Elegant Vessels Book

Ironwood is a dense, dark hardwood native to the Southwest. It has become a popular material to combine with silver and turquoise by Native smiths in the manufacture of jewelry and other items. Ironwood and silver were often employed by Navajo artist Kenneth Begay. A number of his pieces from the Elkus collection are now housed at the California Academy of Sciences. It has been used here as the body of a box whose top has mounted silver trefoil devices at the four corners and features a thunderbird channel-set with turquoise in the center. A silver knob to lift the top of the box has been affixed at the midsection of the thunderbird. This box was marketed by King’s Indian Jewelry in Scottsdale.

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