This jeweler has innovative roots that go back to his famed grandfather, Leo Poblano, who led Zuni jewelry beyond the traditional, and his mother, Veronica, whose delicate, feminine jewelry also wins prizes. About ten years ago, Dylan, his mother, sister and then-brother-in-law, were all featured in a national museum exhibit of contemporary Native jewelry, that toured the country. He was then not yet 30 years old. He is renowned for his fashion-forward, sometimes daringly contemporary work, but this necklace shows a sweeter, softer side.
A strand of sparkling. faceted, royal blue beads is animated by a few, bright blue turquoise rounds. The blue crystal beads come from the Czech Republic, historically famous for the finest glass and crystal. They are clasped with a sturdy, shimmering, handmade hook and eye of sterling silver. So far, so pretty, but not cutting edge. The pendant, however, is a contemporary, cut-out square of boxed silver, inlaid with high-set rectangles of various stones.
At the top, moody, iridescent labradorite; the bottom is a piece of golden, translucent alabaster with a little piece of deep purple sugilite at one side, and a long piece of royal blue lapis, on the other. Above the sugilite, a radiant piece of variscite (similar in color to turquoise ) glows with vivid hues. The stones appear to be randomly placed, but yellow – as in the alabaster – is the complement of purple, and the orange cast to it is complementary to blue. The variscite also adds a jolt of vibrant color to the somber labradorite and deep, dark lapis. A further touch of creative innovation: the lapis is set at a slant, lower at the bottom, and raised at the other end.
The reverse of the pendant is incised with dragonfly symbols and parallel lines, referring to rainfall. These link the piece to tradition, despite the very untraditional elements and materials. Apparently, the choice of blue stones and crystals was not entirely random; that is also the color of water and sky, while the labradorite represents stormy clouds.
A transitional necklace, combining modernity and tradition, by a major voice in innovative jewelry. Beautiful, beautifully made, and easy to wear, as well.