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ZUNI SPIRITS:  A PORTFOLIO OF FINE ZUNI FETISH CARVINGS See all our Zuni fetishes for sale! How to order, how to pay! Updates, chatter & photos from Darlene Articles of interest to Zuni fetish collectors. Search our site for carver, stone, animal or anything you wish! Some of our favorite real & cyber places.


Dave & Darlene, Dec. 2007

ABOUT US!: Information about the origins of ZUNI SPIRITS, Darlene & Dave, our interests and our family.

WHAT ARE ZUNI FETISHES?: Interested in Zuni fetishes but want to know their purpose and origin? Read this brief article about what Zuni fetishes represent.

ZUNI FETISH MEANINGS: Explore the various attributes and meanings of some of the traditional and not-so-traditional fetishes from Zuni-land.

STONE INFORMATION: This is page is still under construction (a work in progress!) but it offers some valuable information about some generic stones that we often find our Zuni fetishes made of.

COOEYATE & GHAHATE: Carvers Norman Cooeyate & Jacqueline Ghahate are some of the most talented "newcomers" to the Zuni fetish carving scene. This article discusses their beginnings and just what their carvings mean to each of these talented artisans.

A LETTER FROM REVA HALATE: The daughter of Leonard Halate wrote to us in June of 2007 about her concerns and disappointment about the duplication of her father's style of carving. We've published both her letter to Zuni Spirits and her letter of 2004 which she circulated to various known Zuni fetish traders hoping educate them and their collectors. We offer it to you for that purpose here.

"SECRETS REVEALED": Enjoy this presentation of the special antler carving created by Norman Cooeyate & Jacqueline Ghahate. It truly demonstrates the intricate and elaborate symbolism that is the foundation of all Zuni art.

ZUNI TRIBAL INAUGURATIONS, 2007: Take a rare glimpse of Zuni Tribal Ceremonial occasion as Governor Norman Cooeyate, Lt. Governor Dancy Simplicio and the newly elected Zuni Tribal Council are installed in office on a cold January day.

DARYL SHACK, SR.: Daryl Shack, Sr. wrote to Zuni Spirits in 2004 to introduce himself and sent beautiful photos of his traditional fetish carvings. We were impressed with his carving and with the professional presentation of his work. We're happy that he is now added to the growing number of carvers represented by Zuni Spirits!

MANUEL WEAHKEE & FAMILY: It was our good fortune to meet Daniel Weahkee and his mother, Sharon, at the Dallas Indian Market several years ago. Our friendship has developed from that point and we look forward to a couple of times a year when all the Weahkees (Manuel, Daniel, Nathaniel & Danielle - (Mom Sharon is a fabulous jewelry artis!) have sent us fetishes to sell.

SOME CUSTOMER THOUGHTS: We work extra hard to keep our collectors happy! Here's what some of our customers think of their "ZUNI SPIRITS EXPERIENCE!"

THE "ELAHKWA PARTY": In June of 2002 we hosted an "Elahkwa ("THANK YOU" in Shiwi) Party" on the beautiful patio at the INN OF HALONA. It was our way of expressing our gratitude to the carvers and their families for the generosity of their talents, creativity, their welcoming spirits, and the warmth of their friendship. The party was wonderful - full of fun and food!

THE TEXAS INDIAN MARKET '06: Each spring the TEXAS INDIAN MARKET show comes to Arlington, Texas. Terrific artists (native and anglo) from around the country, along with great entertainment and food, make this a must-see show. Here are our pictures from the 2006 show.

DALLAS INDIAN MARKET: The American Indian Arts Council used to put on an annual show in Dallas each October. Sadly the show has been discontinued and now, instead, they have a storefront in Dallas. We always enjoyed this show and looked forward to seeing Gibbs Othole, Dee Edaakie, Veronica Poblano, The Weahkee family and others. If you'd like to see our photos from past shows, click here.

ZUNI SPIRITS MUSIC LIST: Dave and I started listening to Carlos Nakai Flute music on rivertrips years ago. It was just the perfect music to take out into the wilderness as it complimented all the natural sounds like the water over rocks, a canyon wren and the wind through the tamarisk. Later, we became aware of lots of amazing Native artists who were creating all kinds of music we enjoyed.

OUR GUEST MAP: If you'd like to see where other Zuni collectors call home, click here. It's our Guest Map and you can put a pin on the map to mark your location, leave comment, post a note .. say "HOWDY" from YOUR part of the world!

ZUNI SALT LAKE: A few years ago the sacred Zuni Salt Lake was under attack and nearly lost to the Salt River Project (a coal mine.) Fortunately, good won over evil and the Zuni people saved their most sacred deity. You can read more about that issue here.

ZUNI WAFFLE GARDENS: For countless generations the Zuni people have been growing squash, corn, and beans along the Zuni river. Their arrid environment called for innovation in farming techniques. You can see old photos (and new ones, too!) and read about the Zuni farming techniques that have survived the test of time .

IN HONOR OF STALEY NATEWA: It was a sad day when we lost the young and talented Staley Natewa. He was the first carver we met in Zuni and we very much enjoyed knowing him. This is our page dedicated to his memory. .

BOQUILLAS CANOE TRIP: Before Dave and I became Zuni fetish traders .. we were bonafide river rats. Here are some photos of a canoe trip we took some years back thru Boquillas Canyon on the Rio Grande as it flows through Big Bend National Park.

JEMEZ JOURNALISM CAMP: Our friends, Wells Mahkee and Mary Bowannie conducted a journalism camp for the budding reporters of Jemez Pueblo. They share their experiences with us here .

Rebecca Schubert's SALT WOMAN STORY: When the Salt Lake Controversy was in full throttle, our friend Rebecca Schubert, compiled this very information paper on the SALT LAKE WOMAN. It's informative and educational reading and will shed some light on this very sacred deity in Zuni culture.

ZUNI POTTERY RETURNS HOME: This is an article reproduced and published here with permission from the National Museum of the American Indian. Much of Zuni's historical pottery was excavated and sent to museums but this is the happy story of some of it coming home.

TOKYO GEM SHOW: A couple of our Japanese collectors attended the Tokyo Gem show some years back and became "field reporters" for Zuni Spirits. Seems most Zuni fetish collectors first loved ROCKS .. so we hope you find this article interesting!

"DR. EMMA": Emma Cothren is just one of the Zuni fetish collectors in her family. And she took a special interest in those fetishes that had suffered some injuries along the way. Though she is now almost a college graduate, this is an article we wrote about her when she was still a high school student.

"ARTICLES FROM THE SHIWI MESSENGER": The SHIWI MESSENGER is no longer in publication but some years ago we were granted permission to reprint and publish some of the more thought provoking articles that appeared in Zuni's newspaper.

ZUNI LANGUAGE PAGES: The Zuni language, like most other things about Zuni, is unique and wonderful. We always enjoyed hearing our friends speak Shiwi while visiting and we thought our collectors might like hearing some common words and phrases in the Shiwi Language too!

RAINBOW CALSILICA - NATURAL OR MAN MADE?: When Rainbow Calsilica first appeared in Zuni it created quite a furor! Then came the debate over whether it occurred naturally or was manmade. The general consensus now is that it's manmade .. but you can read more about it here.

LITTLE ZUNI ARTISANS: Since Dave and I are both creative type souls .. we are enchanted with Zuni and it's MULTITUDE of artists. Most every household will have at least one full-time artist making either fetishes, jewelry, pottery or weavings. (I personally think bread-making is an art, too!) Even the LITTLE Zunis are creative ... look here!

THE OLD ZUNI MISSION & MURALS OF DR. ALEX SEOWTEWA: The gods were definitely smiling on Dave and I on our very first trip to Zuni-land. Not only did we have the good fortune to meet a number of our favorite artists .. we also were honored to meet and spend time with Dr. Alex Seowtewa. He and his sons have been painting murals in the Old Zuni Mission since 1971.

THE ZUNI EAGLE SANCTUARY: One of our favorite places in Zuni happens to be the Zuni Eagle Sanctuary. The first of its kind in the county, the eagle sanctuary houses eagles that have been injured and are not releasable to the wild. The eventual hope is that they will breed eagles and those offspring will be returned to freedom.

THE GREAT MOLE CONTROVERSY!: I got myself in trouble with a collector when I insisted on calling "moles" shrews. Here's the result of my research on the subject of MOLES vs. SHREWS.

SHALAKO: The Shalako ceremonies in Zuni are the culmination of a year's worth of prayers, dances, ceremonials and studious preparation by the participants. It's the highest of holy days in Zuni. Though we've experienced it several times, it's still not something easily verbalized .. and maybe that's as it should be.

BRANDON CALAVAZA'S SHALAKO POEM: Shalako is the most sacred of Zuni ceremonies. It's an honor to witness and something you'll not soon forget. Brandon was a young student employed at THE SHIWI MESSENGER when he wrote this poem about Shalako. With his permission, we published it here.

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