Abstract Kachina Bolo
A striking example of masterful inlay work, creating a modern look for a traditional piece, with ancient materials.
The bolo suggests the mask of a kachina, or ceremonial dancer, in an intricate arrangement of geometric squares, rectangles and straight lines.
Set into a gleaming sterling silver back, the main material in this casually elegant bolo is fossilized ivory from the tusks of pre-historic mastodons. The mellow variations in warm hues and textures are all natural.
The patchwork arrangement of the ivory pieces, is interspersed with accents of vividly colored turquoise and rich purple sugilite. These materials are natural, as well.
There are short streaks of polished silver channels, that add sparkle to the muted luster of the stones and ivory.
Notice the line of three small round stones, at the top of the bolo,a raised dome of gorgeous turquoise, flanked by a piece of sugilite, and one of ivory. This breaks up the severe rectilinear geometry of the bolo.
The dangling earrings, below its “chin” each have a silver collar that contains different stones; one is turquoise, and the other ivory. Both stones are cut at an angle.
At the ends of the hand-braided leather cord, simple tips, with petal-like silver tops, each hold a silver and ivory dangle that relates to, but doesn’t repeat, the dangling earrings.
These tiny touches add immeasurably to the artistry of the piece.
Designed boldly, the carefully composed pieces of fossil ivory, in varying tones, and brilliantly blue, natural Kingman turquoise, are grounded with deep purple sugilite accents.
With its size and chunk inlay, other stones might have been brighter and more insistent; the beauty of this little masterwork is that the elements form a complex pattern, but the soft hues of the dominant ivory, keep the the mood elegantly contemplative, enlivened with the tiny jolts of color.
The clasp is a handmade silver figure eight, and the hand made cord is equal in quality to the jewelry.
The entire bolo is a work of visual and sculptural art that you may want to display on the wall, when not wearing it.