Zuni Otter Fetish Carving
Zuni fetish carving of a turquoise otter with a mother of pearl shell by carver Bernie Lasalute
2 1/2″ x 1/2″
Zuni fetishes are small carvings made from primarily stone but also shell, fossils, and other materials by the Zuni people. Within the Zuni community, these carvings serve ceremonial purposes for their creators and depict animals and icons integral to their culture. As a form of contemporary Native American art, they are sold with secular intentions to collectors worldwide. Prior to the establishment of a non-Native market for fetishes, Hopi, Navajo, and other Pueblo peoples, especially at Kewa Pueblo also carved and used fetishes.