Chris Billie Arizona Kingman Turquoise Pendant Native American Handmade
Authentic Native American Handmade
100% Sterling Silver
Natural Arizona Kingman Turquoise
Chris Billie, Navajo Tribe
Product Description :
Navajo Artist, Chris Billie handmade the gorgeous Tufa Cast Pendant with Natural Arizona Kingman Turquoise. The gorgeous stone sits in a Sterling Silver Tufa Cast setting with a detailed stamp work. Chris Billie has Stamped the back of the pendant with his hallmark and a Sterling Silver stamp.
Tufa Cast :
Tufa Cast goes back to the early 1800’s when the Spaniards taught the Navajo’s how to work with silver. In the early years before torches and gasoline in order for a silversmith to melt silver he would have to take hot coals from a fire into a small bucket. Silver coins where placed onto pottery shards that where fashioned into a crucible. The crucible then was placed into a bucket to melt which transforms into molten silver. The silver would then be poured into Tufa stone and allowed to cool.
Tufa Stone is a volcanic stone which can be found in many parts of the world, including the New Mexico and Arizona Reservation. The stone is soft which allows the silversmith to carve a design but strong enough to withstand high temperatures. The tufa stone creates a very distinctive sandstone finish and can usually only last up to two castings before the tufa becomes unusable.
Chris Billie :
Navajo artist Chris Billie is a local artist in Gallup, New Mexico. He was raised on the New Mexico Reservation and is a new Tufa Cast artist. Chris picked up the trade very quickly and is already creating outstanding jewelry. He is a self taught artist specializing in the Traditional Tufa Cast used back in the early 1800's. Chris Billie comes from a long line of silversmiths and is the brother to Stewart Billie who is also an amazing Tufa Caster. Chris specializes in Sterling Silver Jewelry with Natural HighGrade Stones and is currently learning to work with Precious Stones which is very exciting. Chris Billie is an amazing artist that we are very proud to work with.