190518-39 Zuni Fetish; Rodney Laiwakete, Onyx Mountain Lion ; 1"h x 2 3/8" l
Late 20th century
1"h x 2 3/8" l
From a private estate collection. ANTLER; turquoise eye/mouth inlay. Holding baby with turquoise, feathers and stone bundle. Stands firmly.
A particularly handsome traditional work.
American Indians have used fetishes throughout recorded history. Fetishes are believed to hold magical powers and protect the owner or craftsmen from various problems of mind or body. Some believe that their mystical powers can even protect against problems of the universe. It is also believed that the care a fetish receives is directly proportional to the protection it will provide. Indians believe that fetishes must be properly cared for. They are given offerings of cornmeal and kept in special turquoise encrusted fetish pots or pouches. Often fetishes are adorned with turquoise, arrowheads and feathers. These are offerings to the fetish for gifts received or anticipated. Zuni Indians believe in the six cardinal guardian fetishes