Navajo Micro Inlay Rainbow Man Yei Pendant by Carl & Irene Clark

Product Description

This elaborate Pendant was made by the hands of pioneering Navajo jewelry-smiths Carl and Irene Clark. The husband-and-wife-duo are famed for their unique style which uses micro-inlay (precise fitting of stone to stone to create an elaborate pattern) to form a picture while using the surrounding metalwork as a frame. This piece uses the painstaking detail of inlay to depict the Rainbow Man Yei, a Navajo figure of protection.

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Carl & Irene Clark
$ 3,375
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Both Carl and Irene Clark are descendants of prolific Navajo Silversmiths and are well-recognized for their micro fine intarsia inlay jewelry. They have been named in many Native American Publications and won numerous awards. The pair use the water symbol as their trademark because they are both from water clans. Their hallmarks often include “I” and “C” for Irene and Carl, respectively. The Clarks have been making jewelry since about 1974. Carl was self-taught in 1973 and then taught Irene in 1974. They then taught their son, Carl Jr., their art when he was in high school. Carl is recognized as founder of the micro-fine inlay technique reminiscent of the art-deco school of the 1930s. At the time of his establishing, there was no category the type of inlay he was practicing and so he coined the term ‘microfine insarsia inlay.’ Carl and Irene work together to handcraft their beautiful jewelry. They both cut, assemble and inlay the stones and Irene hand fabricates the gold and silver. Irene does much of the design work and Carl does the tufa stone casting. They very often stamp the inside or the back of their jewelry and often incorporate traditional Navajo figures such as the Yei figure. Carl and Irene take pride in their work and it shows in the detail. They feel that it reflects the Navajo tradition because “We use good feelings and make jewelry traditionally with precision and care without rushing. Our jewelry takes much longer to make than common piece of jewelry.”

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