Native of San Felipe Pueblo, but married into Santo Domingo Kewa, she and her husband Frank, collaborate on their prize-winning mosaic jewelry; he usually cuts, grinds and polishes the materials, while Charlene designs and inlays the pieces. This dazzling necklace is a spectacular example.
Dark-as-night black jet is the background for inlaid rectangles of dark blue lapis, melon and coral-hued spiny oyster shell, and scintillating mother of pearl. Like a view of city lights after dark, the view is brilliantly glamorous, mysterious and mesmerizing.
On the other side, a bright sunny day is evoked by vivid blue turquoise, sunny gold and red spiny oyster shell, and glistening mother of pearl, with patches of dark blue lapis and channels of black.
The rounded ovals hang from flattened round beads of red spiny oyster shell, so both sides are coordinated with them. The beads are also graduated: smaller at the top, and largest at the bottom, where the inlaid ovals are.
A wonderful piece – especially for travelers – two necklace in one. Just flip over the whole necklace, or some of the ovals, to form a different look(s) entirely. Classic, timeless, intriguing, and imaginative, as well as stunning, wear this necklace day – or night.
Laboriously and beautifully fabricated entirely by hand, the little inlaid square, midway up the beads, is the artist’s signature.