Cheyenne is one of the artists honored in the museum show “Changing Hands: Art without Reservation, Contemporary Indian Art of the Southwest”.
It celebrated cutting edge Native arts, and traveled across the country, from New York’s prestigious American Craft Museum, several years ago.
She made her first bracelet at age 4, and grew up watching her mother make jewelry.
Cheyenne’s roots are in Navajo silversmithing, going back four generations; her own style is decidedly contemporary.
Influenced by her studies at prestigious art schools, and by modern Scandinavian and Japanese jewelry, among others, her work is strikingly original.
Creating highly contemporary forms, usually without stones, she emphasizes the quality of the metal.
She is especially known for fusing 24-karat gold onto sterling, as in this arresting, geometric pin.
Brilliantly composed geometric elements very subtly reference some Native imagery.
For instance, the crinkled, polished silver arc at top left resembles a rainbow, and/or the tablita headdresses of Pueblo dancers.
Minimally curved pieces, across the top slat, and jutting up from the right, also suggest rainbows.
Chiseled edges, and heavily scored texture on the long piece, suggest rain, while the brilliantly warm flashes of 24-karat gold reference the sun.
This pin is like a miniature, contemporary sculpture that is wearable. It is meticulously fabricated, by hand.
Ancient roots have developed futuristic forms, flawlessly designed and constructed by a celebrated and unique artist.
Elegant, unusual, and compelling, with its artfully composed shapes and textures, this is an excitingly sophisticated and creative piece of jewelry.