The artist was a recognized master of meticulously fashioned and colorful inlay, often paired with fine silver work. Sadly for us all, he passed away unexpectedly, but we found we still had a few pieces of his, including this pendant, which is quintessential Richard Begay.
This lovely pendant is a tribute to Navajo women, and combines the colors of the red rocks, and blue skies of the Navajo lands. Her jet hair and natural pink coral face are serenely simple; there is a small piece of white mother of pearl, inlaid for her hair binding. In contrast, the silver overlay is finely detailed. The vibrant, natural red coral of her necklace is predominant, and includes accents of blue turquoise “heishi”.
Behind the necklace, the artist has shown her collar; velvet in real life, but polished silver, here. The beautiful stepped design that represents her blouse also symbolizes rain, which is one of the greatest blessings in the desert. A darkened silver background allows the designs to stand out, and the polished edges form a gleaming frame.
A sure conversation piece, as well as a lovely, colorful design, this would look splendid on a collar – one of Al Joe’s silver collars, for example, or silver beads – or a suitably handsome chain; or coral, or turquoise, or silver, or jet, heishi. Or,….. you will find ways to wear this very often.