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NP524 - $35 plus s/h
Paula says: "Are you wondering why this item is not described as Native American? You can find the answer by clicking here."
Navajo Yei Figure
Yei is a shortened version of YeiBeiChei, a holy figure in the Navajo culture.
The yei figure symbolizes healing powers.
It can be depicted
standing upright, curved or angled in a three-sided square.
Appearing as Petroglyphs (Rock Art) in North America, Yei figures are often use in healing sand paintings and woven into rugs.
Yei figures fashioned into jewelry are less common so are treasures not to be passed up.
What does Sand Cast mean?
Sand cast items are Indian Hand Made items using a procedure developed by the Navajo silversmiths in the mid 1800s. It is a labor-intensive process that involves many steps.
Using Tuff Stone, a porous rock from volcanic ash, Tufa Stone, a porous limestone that forms near hot springs, or Sandstone, a harder stone, the artist carves the design of the item being cast. Another flat stone is placed against the carved half of the mold. The halves are fastened together and a sprue hole is carved into one end. Molten silver is poured into the mold using the sprue hole. Once the silver cools, the item is taken out and finished. Bracelets are poured flat and then shaped.
Due to the porous nature of Tuff or Sand Stone, sandcast items will have character marks and imperfections such as small pits. That is the nature of Sand Casting and Indian Hand Made.
Why isn't this item called Native American?
The US Department of the Interior Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990 and its recent Amendments require that items described as Native American or Indian be made by an enrolled member of a federally recognized tribe. Furthermore, government regulations suggest that all attributions include the Native American Indian's name, tribe and federal tribal enrollment number. Because it is impossible to identify the artist for many vintage items, even if they are authentic Indian made items, we cannot and will not use the words Native American or Indian in association with such pieces.
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