American Jewelry Art




Introduction

This section of the Traditional Fine Arts Organization (TFAO) catalogue Topics in American Art is devoted to the topic "American Jewelry Art." Articles and essays specific to this topic published in TFAO's Resource Library are listed at the beginning of the section. Clicking on titles takes readers directly to these articles and essays. The date at the end of each title is the Resource Library publication date.

After articles and essays from Resource Library are links to valuable online resources found outside our website. Links may be to museums' articles about exhibits, plus much more topical information based on our online searches. Following online resources may be information about offline resources including museums, DVDs, and paper-printed books, journals and articles.

We recommend that readers search within the TFAO website to find detailed information for any topic. Please see our page How to research topics not listed for more information.

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Articles and essays from Resource Library in chronological order:

 

From other websites:

American Indian Jewelry from Native Languages of the Americas. Accessed August, 2015.

Art Jewelry, Favrile Metalwork & Precious Glass by Louis Comfort Tiffany is an ongoing exhibit at the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art. The museum says: "Unlike the extravagant jewelry produced under the direction of Charles Lewis Tiffany (1812­1902) at Tiffany & Co., Louis Comfort Tiffany's jewelry was distinguished by design and color. He executed his innovative creations using largely semiprecious stones and enamels." The article includes a 2-page exhibit object guide. Accessed August, 2016.

Be Dazzled! Masterworks of Jewelry and Beadwork from the Heard Museum is an online exhibit of the Heard Museum. Includes texts and images. Accessed January, 2015.

The Cutting Edge: Contemporary Southwestern Jewelry and Metalwork is an online exhibit of the Heard Museum. Includes texts and images. Accessed January, 2015.

Heard Museum maintained a Heard Videos page containing links to documentaries, interviews and performances. As of February, 2010 interviews include a three-part interview with Albuquerque Museum Curator Deborah Slaney who tours the C.G. Wallace collection of Zuni Jewelry. In other videos, Norman Sandfield discusses his seedpot collection and Nora Naranjo-Morse speaks about her sculpture. [Link found to be expired as of 2015 audit. TFAO is saving the citation for use by researchers.]

Jana Brevick: This Infinity Fits in My Hand was a 2015 exhibit at the Bellevue Art Museum which says: "In Jana Brevick's hands, the prosaic household object or tool is transformed into a gem. The resulting work juxtaposes a high level of metal craftsmanship with a droll tongue-in-cheek delivery. With a nod to Man Ray, these wry "chance meetings" are often accompanied by twists on scale and proportion that challenge conventions of wearability.... Brevick is insatiably curious about the world and beyond. Her ongoing research into mathematics and the natural sciences forms the basis for many of her pieces. In her work, an awe for the history of scientific discovery and innovation is offset by her fascination with the beauty of obsolete technologies. Also see artist website. Accessed 1/17

J. Mark Sublette of Medicine Man Gallery, Inc. has secured permission to reprint online numerous articles concerning Western and Native American art from publishers of several paper-printed magazines. Included are articles on Native American jewelry. The gallery has posted several videos on Navajo jewelry and turquoise on its YouTube channel. Accessed August, 2015.

 

Books:

The Beauty of Navajo Jewelry, By Theda Bassman, Ph.D., Gene Balzer. Preview this book. Published 1997 by Kiva Publishing. 79 pages. ISBN:1885772025. Google Books says: "An elegant array of museum quality pieces are showcased illustrating the marvelous creativity and artistry of Navajo jewelers. The book features the fine photography of noted photographer Gene Balzer. Detailed descriptions accompany each piece photographed." Note: Google Books offers a Limited Preview of this book. For more information on this and other digitizing initiatives from publishers please click here and here. (right: front cover, The Beauty of Navajo Jewelry. Photo courtesy Google Books)

Be Dazzled!: Masterworks of Jewelry and Beadwork from the Heard Museum, By Gail Bird, Heard Museum. Published by Heard Museum, 2002. ISBN 0934351651, 9780934351652. 80 pages. Google Books says: "Series of 3 catalogs published to accompany a series of 3 exhibitions organized by and held at the Heard Museum in 2001-2003, and tour internationally under the title Masterworks from the Heard Museum."

Encyclopedia of Native American Jewelry: A Guide to History, People, and Terms, By Paula A. Baxter, Allison Bird-Romero. Published 2000 by Oryx Press. 296 pages. ISBN:1573561282. Google Books says: "This new guide is the first to explore all facets of Native American jewelry -- its history, variety, and quality -- in one convenient resource. With coverage beginning in the mid-nineteenth century, this resource includes artists, techniques, materials, motifs, and more. The encyclopedia opens with a helpful introductory essay to acquaint the reader with the subject. More than 350 entries and over 80 photos make this new encyclopedia an exceptional value." (right: front cover, Encyclopedia of Native American Jewelry: A Guide to History, People, and Terms. Photo courtesy Google Books)

A Guide to Indian Jewelry of the Southwest, By Georgiana Kennedy Simpson. Published 1999 by Western National Parks Association. 48 pages. ISBN:158369000X. Google Books says: "The third in our series of best-selling guides to collectible Indian crafts. Features bright, clear photographs of work by Navajo, Zuni, Hopi, and Santo Domingo artists. Brief text details the meticulous tasks these artists perform to create a southwestern style of wearable art."Note: Google Books offers a Limited Preview of this book. For more information on this and other digitizing initiatives from publishers please click here and here. (left: front cover, A Guide to Indian Jewelry of the Southwest. Photo courtesy Google Books)

Hopi Silver: The History and Hallmarks of Hopi Silversmithing, by Margaret Nickelson Wright. 160 pages. University of New Mexico Press; 1998 revision edition (August 30, 2003) ISBN-10: 0826333826. ISBN-13: 978-0826333827

Southwestern Indian Jewelry, By Dexter Cirillo. Photographs by Stephen Northup, Michael Monteaux. Contributor Steven Northup, Michael Monteaux. Published 1992 by Abbeville Press. Abbeville says: "Spectacular photographs of the breathtaking beautiful objects and sensitive portraits of the artists combine with an insightful, informative text to capture the spirit of this work and the vital cultures from which it springs. This ground-breaking volume opens by surveying the vividly colored necklaces, earrings, and pins made in shell and stone from prehistoric times to the present, particularly in the Santo Domingo and Zuni pueblos. The focus then shifts to the much-admired and avidly collected work in silver -- often set with turquoise and other stones -- by Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni artists. The book culminates in an exploration of striking contemporary work in which many artists have adapted traditional approaches to create original designs. A collector's guide offers invaluable advice as well as an illustrated glossary of materials, techniques, objects, and designs. A nationwide directory of sources concludes the book." (right: front cover, Southwestern Indian Jewelry. Photo courtesy Google Books) Note: the Introduction to this book may be read at the Abbeville Press web site.

White Metal Universe: Navajo Silver from the Fred Harvey Collection, By Heard Museum of Anthropology and Primitive Art, E. W. Jernigan, Gary Witherspoon. Published by Heard Museum, 1981. ISBN 0934351201, 9780934351201. 53 pages

 

DVD/VHS video:

Charles Loloma & Helen Hardin. Presents the world famous Hopi jeweler Charles Loloma displays some of his work and discusses his heritage, and presents Helen Hardin painting sophisticated geometric patterns and traditional Indian motifs while exploring her attempt to integrate the Indian and artist parts of her self. 1988. 60 min. Video/C 1579. Available from Media Resources Center, Library, University of California, Berkeley.

TFAO does not maintain a lending library of videos or sell videos. Click here for information on how to borrow or purchase copies of VHS videos and DVDs listed in TFAO's Videos -DVD/VHS, an authoritative guide to videos in VHS and DVD format

 

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