A Native American Fetish Necklace is a unique piece of historical, intricate and unique piece of Indian art. The Native American Fetish necklace encompasses a great and wonderful cultural and religious tradition as well. The Native American Fetish necklace has been used for many religious traditions as well, particularly the Zuni people.
Many examples of the Native American Fetish necklace represent a certain god within the Zuni culture and personified in animal form. These gods are often looked upon as guardians in some way. The artist of this medium can use many different types of materials for a Native American Fetish necklace. This piece will examine the history, religious tradition, and general art form that is Native American necklace making.
Religious and Ceremonial History of the Native American Fetish Necklace
Individuals of all races and ethnicity have grown to appreciate the intricate carving and designs of the Native American Fetish necklace. However, the carvings that make up this type of necklace also have a great amount of ceremonial and religious importance for the main producer of the Native American Fetish Necklace, the Zuni. In the Zuni creation myth, the world is comprised of mountains that make up six regions. Each region has a guardian, a god that is personified in animal form. For example, to the north the guardian is the yellow mountain lion; to the south the guardian is the red badger; the east is guarded by the white wolf; the sky is the domain of the multi-colored eagle; and the underground region is the home of the black mole god.
Originally, the Native American Fetish necklace was not just an art form but served an important ceremonial benefit because all of these gods were thought to have some form of healing and protective powers. The intricate carvings of the Native American Fetish necklace invite the viewer to another time and place, echoing the important rituals of the Zuni people. Of course, the Native American fetish necklace can include other gods within Zuni culture such as gods of the hunt or gods of the priesthood.
The Native American Fetish Necklace Today
The art form of the Native American Fetish necklace still exists today, and is not just relegated to the gods of the Zuni tradition either. Many of the Native American fetish necklace varieties today can depict frogs, buffaloes, rams, insects and even dinosaurs. Although seen as non-traditional, the same process is used for these Native American necklace varieties as was done in times past.