Origin: Teddy Weahkee, Zuni
Date: First half of the 20th C.
Media: Stone, turquoise, shell, sinew, bear hair, feather
Dimensions: 1.35″ long
Description: This frog is made of a white stone (which appears to be like white jade) that is circled at the belly with sinew holding a turquoise arrowhead and a few small shell beads. A small feather and bear hair is under the arrowhead going forward over the frog’s head, obscuring it. The hind legs are clearly visible. The shape of the whole frog is best seen from the underbelly. Pinon pitch has been used to cover the frog, but most of it has rubbed off over time.
These figures were made for tourist trade, and are some of the earlier items made during that period that bridged the authentic objects used for tribal rituals and then those sold to tourists. While this is a tourist object, it is an early example of that transition period.
Provenance: This single fetish was acquired along with 14 others, all from the Tres Compadres Ranch of the McMahon family of Houston, TX. Patricia Bennett McMahon (1929-2017) and her sister had one of the early art galleries in Santa Fe, NM.