Thursday, July 31, 2014

Take your bed for granted? Don't.

Photo copyright LoreleiHI, 2014; all rights reserved.

Have you ever had to sleep without a bed?  I don't mean a night or two in a sleeping bag as a kid, or even as an adult. I mean an extended period with no bed at all.

I have. It's terrible.

When you have disabling conditions, like I do, it's downright murderous.

My beautiful, big-hearted sister River has a diary up at over at the Great Orange Satan for a woman who is a friend to both of us:  LoreleiHI. Lorelei has, among other things, hip dysplasia that makes sleeping on an air mattress a problem; now that the air mattress is punctured (by the claws of her roommate's cat) and going flat, it's impossible. She has other disabling conditions, too, and decent sleep, rare at the best of times, is a priority. That's her in the photo above, snuggling her service dog, Púka.

Lorelei is one of those folks who is bright, beautiful, big-hearted, and incredibly talented — and who the universe handed a very short straw from jump. She has faced, and survived, things that are unimaginable to most people. But she needs a little help now. So please, let's take a shot at easing some of her very great physical pain. Let's get her a bed — not another air mattress, which is a very bad choice for people with the kinds of chronic illnesses that we have (yes, that's hard experience talking), but a real bed.

Please go share River's diary with your networks. And if you can afford to kick in a few bucks, please do that, too. For those who want to go straight to her PayPal account, here's her e-mail address to use:
loreleihi at live dot com
Chi miigwech.


Photo copyright Aji, 2014; all rights reserved.

It's #TBT at The NDN Silver Blog, and we've gone all the way back to southern New Mexico in the late 19th Century. With a few detours to Mexico, Arizona, Florida, Alabama, and Oklahoma.

The featured piece is a stunning pastel of incredible depth by an Isleta Pueblo artist, a portrait of Goyathlay, who the rest of the world knows as Geronimo. The post itself is about the man and his history.

A few words about things I didn't cover there: Toward the end of the post, there's an embedded link that takes you to history brochure published by The Inn of the Mountain Gods, the casino and resort of the Mescalero Apache Nation, where Goyathlay's descendants live. If you're even in New Mexico and have a chance to get down there, do:  It's stunningly beautiful country, in the shadow of the second-highest peak in the state, their sacred White Mountain (Sierra Blanca, on the maps). Great ski country, too. The Inn itself features very good food, incredible Native art, and at certain times of the year, performances by the Apache Crown Dancers. If you've never seen them, put it on your list of things to do.

Second, there's a bit in there about the history of his name[s], and some discussion of Saint Jerome. In an odd confluence, Taos Pueblo's Catholic patron saint is Saint Jerome, and the big celebration at the end of each September is the Feast of San Geronimo.

Third, the artwork: It looks like a watercolor, but it's pastel, and incredibly realistic. It's done on kaba paper, a kind of paper made from the compressed wood of a kind of Japanese birch tree, and it's perfect for this particular piece. It's fully matted and framed, and the frame itself is similarly suited: It's reclaimed barn wood, rustic but very strong, just like the heart of the subject within its boundaries.

So please go take a look. If you like it, please share via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the post, and at the bottom of Wings's main page.

P.S. You can credit blame me for the quality of the photo. Wings would never take something so amateurish.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Forces of Nature

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Today at The NDN Silver Blog, it's a brand new showpiece

Of course, the piece itself is only a part of it, but it's absolutely spectacular. The rest ain't bad, either.

So come and learn about metamorphic rock, about staurolite, about azurite and malachite, about elements and symbols and forces of Nature and how Wings ties them all together in one incredible piece of art.

Shares from the post itself, and from the main page, are very, very much needed.


Also, too:  "Go away."

#stalker #fakeshaman #racistculturalappropriator #fedup

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Treasures, But No Fairy Tales

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Okay, so some folks associate it with fairy tales.  We take you to another level.

It's Turquoise Tuesday at The NDN Silver Blog, and today, it's an exploration of what is known as Sleeping Beauty turquoise. As always, we walk you through the thumbnail version of the history, leaven it with some of the old stories and symbolism, and finish it off with some really incredible imagery. It's worth taking a look just for the photos alone — not only the silverwork, but the very stones themselves.

Please share with all your networks, on- and offline: both the post itself and the main page.


Monday, July 28, 2014

Inventory Notes

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

There are some newly-available pieces on the Web site. 

Not new pieces, although I'll be posting one of those soon, too. These are pieces that had been marked "Reserved" as a favor to people who wanted to buy them. With one exception (and this is someone who discussed reserving an item with me just last week and has made arrangements, so that piece is safe), all of the others have just been returned to available inventory.

Some of these have been reserved, literally, for months. We can't afford to keep merchandise off the market when even partial payment is not forthcoming in an at-least-somewhat-timely fashion. We're actually very understanding about this sort of thing; we've worked with people over some very long periods so that they can get the pieces they want. But we can't hold things indefinitely with no contact and no deposit or partial payment of any sort.

So, a few items are once again available for sale: items in the Necklaces, Pins, and Rings Galleries, and a photograph from Wings's recent show. If you were interested in one of these, now's a good time to snap it up.

Lines of Demarcation

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

That's the topic of today's post at The NDN Silver Blog. It's a musing on what a threshold is, what we think the word means, what it represents culturally and how and whether to cross it, what it means if we don't.

It's also a highlight of a photo with some really rich depth and texture, the kind that makes you want to touch it.

Take a look. If you like it, or even if it just makes you think, please share it via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the post itself, and at the bottom of the main page.


[And probably not around much online again today. My to-do list keeps growing, while my time and other resources keep shrinking, so I'll be juggling while running.] 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Ice Chronicles: Sand Colic, Second Phase

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Yeah, no, that's not mud. 

Although all this little sharp shiny-looking bits? That is sand. More precisely, silicates, particulate matter. Very sharp. Very lethal to a horse's gut.

That — and another pile of virtually identical size and composition — is what Ice left on the ground yesterday.

He'd been doing so well. No colicky episodes. No posturing. No discomfort. Eating and drinking normally. He'd even put on a little weight again. Passing absolutely normal-looking manure in size and shape (with plenty of sand still present, of course, but that's to be expected). We thought he was out of the woods, finally. 

Chickens, hatch, count.

Storm and Fire [Ice May Come Later]

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Today at The NDN Silver Blog, it's a continuation of our exploration of elemental powers, this time once again through the lens of fire, but also of storms of all kinds.

Where yesterday's post focused largely on more practical elements like materials and mineralogy, today's emphasis is squarely on the symbolic.

Go take a look; it's worth it just to see the photo alone. And please share via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the post itself, and at the bottom of the main page.

[And if I have time later, I'll throw in an update here on Ice. Ice the horse, not ice the stone or the metaphor.]


Saturday, July 26, 2014

Elemental Powers

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Today at the The NDN Silver Blog, it's an exploration of the elements, mediated and midwifed through Wings's art. This time, it's fire and ice, clashing polar opposites that nonetheless can work together to produce something much more than the sum of their parts.

Kind of like art generally.

Of course, it's not just the jewelry. There's background information about the materials, historical and symbolic context . . . and, of course the art itself.

Go take a look. And please share via the social-media buttons at the bottom of this page and this page. We really do need to make some sales, and whomever this series of pieces is meant for is one lucky person indeed.

Thanks, everybody.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Gone Fishin'

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Oh, if only

But we have other responsibilities right now. So here's the pointer to today's piece up at The NDN Silver Blog, talking about goin' fishin' and fish stories.  With a really beautiful piece of art to illustrate it.

Go take a look, but heed the warning at the end if you're planning any fish stories of your own.

And, as always, shares of the post itself and of Wings's main page are welcomed with gratitude.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

#TBT: Horses!

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Yes, it's Throwback Thursday on social media, and today at The NDN Silver Blog, we're going way back: We're exploring the role of the horse in our cultures and our art.

No, it's not an all-encompassing discussion; it's a blog post, not a dissertation. But it covers a few aspects of both culture and art that you may not have known, and it does so with some really gorgeous photos of some really cool pieces.

I am absolutely buried withs tuff today and won't be around much, if at all. But we really need all the exposure we can get. So shares via the social-media buttons — not of this post or the Facebook shares, but of the actual links to the post on the site and to Wings's main page — are crucial. And they are welcomed with much gratitude.

And in a few minutes, I'm off an running, migraine notwithstanding. I'll see everyone later today. I hope.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My sister honors her late husband every day as an activist on the cause of her life. Let's help her keep doing it.

Heather and her beloved Dan
Photo copyright Heather, 2014; all rights reserved.

I have a lot of sisters, none of them blood. It doesn't matter; in most cases, we're as close or even closer (than my own blood, anyway).

And right now, one of them is in a serious bind. She's a widow with disabling health conditions who has spent much of recent years caring for others; financially, she lives on the edge at the best of times. But now, she's alone, and she's been forced to move into an apartment even less expensive than the extremely modest one she was calling home until recently. She's far away from us, and across a national border, so we can't be there to help in person. And she's good people. Hell, she's a much better person than I will ever be.

Beyond being simply a good person — moral, ethical, mindful, compassionate — she's also a dedicated anti-torture activist. For years, this has been cause and mission, vocation and avocation for her. Her late husband, Dan, was a disabled VietNam veteran who had been tortured as a prisoner of war, and whose health had been damaged beyond repair by exposure to toxins while in-country besides. She bore witness to the war he was forced to continue to fight for the remainder of his life, a daily battle for body and mind, soul and spirit, and she was his moral, physical, mental, and spiritual support throughout. What she saw Dan face every day — what she faced with him every day — altered her forever. And now, though he has walked on, she has taken up the mantle in an even more direct way than before, becoming a fierce activist in her own right for the cause that was (and took) his life.

I'm talking, of course, about Heather, who many of you know as Chacounne.

Over the jump, read on to find out more about this wonderful woman I am proud to call kin, and exactly what it is that she needs to stay connected to the world. Less than $900 will keep her utilities connected; another $1,200 will replace her old, tired, and now-dead laptop with one that will provide the connectivity, stability, and enhancements she needs to remain linked to the outside world when she can't travel, and to continue her important anti-torture work around the world.

On Perspectives

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

That's today's topic over at The NDN Silver Blog, explored by way of one of Wings's pieces, the one shown above.

It's a lesson I always seem to need to relearn myself. After recent events, it's one I certainly needed to have put in front of me today.

As always, we very much need social-media shares, both of the post at the link above and of the main page of Wings's Web site, and we're grateful for every single share they get.

Also, please watch for the post I mentioned yesterday, for a friend of ours. It's coming up in just a few minutes.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

"The REAL Indian Turquoise"

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Yup. It's Tuesday. And that means Turquoise Tuesday at The NDN Silver Blog.

Come and learn a little about the stone that the dominant culture had decided is "THE REAL Indian turquoise": Morenci. Of course, turquoise from the other mines is real, too, but this one is considered the classic, the icon, the archetype.

The post is here. There's lots of information packed in there, including a humorous story about some copper miners. Take a look around, see what you think, and of course, if you like it, please use the social-media buttons at the bottom of the post to share it, as well as the ones at the bottom of the main page of Wings's site.

And now comes the hat in hand part. Later today, with any luck, I'll have a post up for a friend and beloved fellow Kossack who needs our help. I'm simply waiting for some information from her, and then I have to make time to finish the post within the whims of our weather and connectivity. I'd like folks to lend it their support when it does go up, whether that's later today or early tomorrow. 

At the same time, we're in trouble here. Sales are nothing this season. I honestly don't know what we're going to do. People need to save their donations for the folks who are in serious immediate danger, like those I've highlighted over the past few days, and the upcoming one. But for anyone who's in the market for purchases, that's a different matter; we don't want donations or gifts, just simply to exchange something of real value in a standard sale transaction. So if you know anyone who might be looking for gifts (or even if you don't; you never know WHO will decide that we have exactly what they need), please, share Wings's site with them. I hate asking. I hate this fear and stress and uncertainty just a little bit more, apparently.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Musings on Brick and Mortar

Photo copyright Wings, 2014;
all rights reserved.

That's today's subject, by way of one of Wings's photos, at The NDN Silver Blog

As the post notes, a brick wall seems a strange subject for a photograph. It's not, though, if you see what I see.

So I take you on a little journey, through its mud and mortar, its chinks and crevices. It's a view that not many people will see. I hope it lets in a little light, and provides some new perspectives.

As always, please share the post itself at the embedded link, via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the page, and at the bottom of the main page of Wings's Web site, too. Like everyone else around here this season, we need sales. The situation here is getting a bit desperate.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Please help us help a friend keep the lights on and stay connected. He's family.

Photo copyright Bobby Neary Sánchez, 2014; all rights reserved.
You may remember that a couple of months ago, a few of us were working together with our dear friend Bobby Neary Sánchez to help save his farm

For those coming to this for the first time, Bobby is a brilliantly talented chef who also runs an animal rescue on the south coast of Puerto Rico. He was doing both up until last year, when his husband, Juan's cancer returned aggressively. Bobby dropped everything to care for Juan full-time, until he walked on this spring. He has a new position as chef lined up, and it's a good one, but the start date has been pushed back, owing to his boss having sustained a fractured ankle.

When we first helped Bobby launch this fundraiser, things were desperate: He was at risk of losing the farm entirely, having to place all of their beloved animals elsewhere and move into an apartment. Yes, it could be done, but it would mean abandoning every last tangible vestige of the life he and Juan shared together for so long and loved so well. Things are a bit better now; he's been able to renegotiate terms on the farm a bit, and it looks like he will be able to remain there, but he really needs a safety net for that.

In the meantime, between the loss of Juan, the initial attempts to save his home, and waiting for the new position to begin, life goes on. And it makes its usual demands, and some not so usual ones, besides. He wound up suspending his fundraising efforts to cope with an influx of unexpected guests of both the two-legged and four-legged variety, and simply to do everything that needs to be done in a day. And much of the expenses for the animals are covered by the rescue entities with whom he's partnered for so many years. But the ordinary bills come due nevertheless, and in the heat of a Puerto Rico summer, when the island is suffering a drought, that can be very expensive indeed.

Right now, he needs about $500 to catch up on his past-due power bill and bring it current. What he will not tell you himself, but I will (yes, I've cleared it) is that his Internet service has been disconnected (like us, he needs a satellite connection to make it work), and the washing machine just blew. We've been there on both counts. I would also like to make sure that he has a little cushion to ensure that he can eat properly.

His original fundraiser goal, for saving the farm entirely, was about $12,000, I believe. In two months, he managed to raise about a quarter of that, but that leaves three-quarters yet to raise to ensure that he can stay in his home. I'd like to see if we can raise, say, 10% of the total over the next few days: enough to bring him current on the power bill, enough to reconnect his Internet service, enough to take care of the washer (where he lives, regularly hauling everything miles into town to a laundromat is neither feasible nor cost-effective), and enough to take care of restocking the fridge and pantry.

Bobby is family to Wings and me. He may live thousands of miles away, but we share not merely interests and vocations but spirits. He is one of the kindest, most generous souls I know, and he would give you the shirt off his back if you showed up at his door in need. You know the phrase, so-and-so is "good people?" That's Bobby. We love him, and we want to make sure he's safe and well.

I know that lots of folks are as strapped as we are. If you can't donate, though, would you mind sharing the link to his GoFundMe page with all your networks, both on- and offline? You never know who will be reached, touched by his story, or maybe that of the rescues, and be moved to kick in a little bit. And, of course, if you can donate, please do. Every bit counts, even the cost of a cup of Starbucks coffee.

Chi miigwech and ta'a from Wings and me. 

Sacred Blues: Part II

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

And here is today's pointer post to the latest at The NDN Silver Blog.

It's got some gorgeous imagery in it: two more beautiful pieces that match yesterday's, each photo flanking one of the landscape images that helped to inspire them. Looking at photos only, the connection's not obvious; the text, however, ties it all together.

So come and visit; learn a little about the sacred spaces that matter to Wings, including the ones he carries with him daily.

And, as always, we're grateful for every social-media share we can get from the links at the bottom of the post itself, and at the site's main page.

Thanks, everyone, from both of us.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

It's a long, hot summer —

Photo copyright Fineena, 2014; all rights reserved.

especially for those living on the edge.

UPDATE: I forgot to tell you how to go about getting the 50%-off discount. When you place your order, you will se a box for a promotional code. Enter move50 to get the discount.

I've got at least three dear online friends in that situation right now, and you'll hear from me about them in turn. Yes, I know; if we could just give them enough money outright to take care of it, we would. In a heartbeat. But as I posted here the other night, we're suddenly in a bit of a bind that way ourselves, so right now, all I can do is let everyone know the situation, and hope that someone else is better placed right now to do what we cannot.

Tonight's friend is Fineena. You may remember that she had a ghastly situation with a landlord recently, and a bunch of us worked to raise enough to get her into a better home, and get her reunited with her four-legged family members.

But it's mid-July, and it's hot, and there's half the month left, and she's down to her last few cents. This is what happens when circumstances force you to move and you have no breathing room, no safety net. She doesn't even have enough to buy supplies to replenish her inventory of yarn so that she can create new fiber art to sell.

She does, however, have a few finished pieces left in stock. My personal favorite is the one in the photo above. And she's making them all available at 50% off, through July 31st. Now, they're priced reasonably to begin with; at half off, they're an absolute steal. And since Wings and I, between us, have a half-dozen of her pieces, we both can attest to their quality and artistry.

So please, go check out her etsy shop. See if there's anything you can't live without. And even if there isn't, please share the link to her site; you never know he will need exactly what she has to offer. And Julia and Sam, her Airedale family members, need kibble.

Chi miigwech.

Sacred Blues: Part I

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Back more or less on schedule today at The NDN Silver Blog, although I had difficulty with this morning's post. Not with the raw material of the subject at hand; with the effects of my autoimmune disease on my brain. 

But you don't always need words, or even sight, to appreciate art. And although both are a problem for me today, that in no way lessens my ability to feel the symbolism and spirit  inherent in today's featured piece.

It's the largest piece in a small collection that he created for his recent show. It filled a integral role there, but it also stands fully on its own, as he always intended. Tomorrow, I'll highlight the collection's other pieces.

Take a look: The beauty of the piece is worth seeing. And, as always, we'd be very grateful for any social-media shares and forwards, both from the post itself and from the main page of his site.


Friday, July 18, 2014

Border Crossings

Photo copyright Aji, 2014; all rights reserved.

For those who haven't seen it yet, here's your pointer to today's post at The NDN Silver Blog.

The olla above figures prominently in it, but it's also an exploration of borders, and crossing, and boundary transgressions of various sorts. It's also a musing on art and identity, and how, despite the best efforts of conquerors at imposing their own artificial lines and rewriting history, art wins out over artifice in the end. With a little help from Spirit, and a little help from dreams.

Go see what you think. If nothing else, I hope it makes you think: about which borders are real, and which are simply superimposed style without substance.

And, as always, shares via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the post, and at the bottom of the main page of Wings's Web site, are very much needed and welcomed with our thanks.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Need a Favor, Folks: Link Shares

I hate this. Absolutely hate it. But no matter how hard we try to juggle everything and keep all the balls in the air, something always knocks one out of the sky. We can never get any kind of breathing room.

This is turning out to be a bad day. We have an urgent family situation, and we need to raise $600. Fast. I'm not asking anyone here to donate money to us. What I am asking you to do is share the link to Wings's Web site via social media and your in-person networks. And if you're one of our clients as well as friends, please share a testimonial to the value and spirit of Wings's work, if you're so inclined.

The piece above is one we'd really like to sell: from Wings's personal collection, fabulous old traditional-style Indian silverwork. At $1,500 + s/h/i, it would cover this situation easily and let us stash the rest into savings. So please, take a look around the site, see if there's anything that you or someone simply can't live without right now. If people see something marked "Sold" that fills that need, tell them they can commission their own special version. They can also send a down payment on something via the PayPal button in the upper right corner right here on this site, if they know they want something but can't swing the whole thing right now, or want something made specially for them. 

But please, above all else, just share the link with your networks.

Chi miigwech and ta'a, from both of us.

#TBT: Indigenous Psychedelia, Existential Sovereignty

Photo copyright Aji, 2014; all rights reserved.
Today's post of the same name at The NDN Silver Blog is both '60s psychedelia and much older history, all merged into the present.

Learn just a little of the real story of the man the dominant culture calls "Chief Joseph." As an added incentive, you get to see Wings's tattoo.

And social-media shares of the post and of the main page of the site itself are welcomed with our thanks, of course.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Corn and Clay

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Very late today, for a whole host of reasons: interruptions, distractions, freezes and hangs and connectivity disruptions, server problems, bad weather, and four-leggeds.

For now, here's your pointer to today's entry at The NDN Silver Blog:  Earth and Sky, Sun and Soil, Water and Light. This is one is special because it highlights the work of Wings's aunt.

As always, social-media shares from the buttons at the bottom of the linked pages, and from the main page of Wings's site, are welcomed with gratitude.

And if you have a spare five floating around, please considering spending it here, via the PayPal address in the update at the top of the post, to help reimburse a kind vet who saved a sweet little four-legged's life.

Thanks, everybody.

Saving Annie for $200

Photo copyright Bobby Neary Sánchez, 2014;
all rights reserved.

You may already know our dear friend Bobby. He lives on a farm in Ranchos Guayama, Puerto Rico, where he does animal rescue, among a host of other good works. He's part of an extended network of good folks, including a number of professionals, such as vets, who give tirelessly of themselves to save Puerto Rico's abused and abandoned animals.

I've heard, first-hand, some of the stories, and a couple of the recent ones were horrifying. For folks who do rescue, the ones you can't save — the ones too badly injured to be able to survive — take another little piece out of your heart and soul and spirit when they go. We know this too well.

Which is why Annie needs to be given every opportunity to thrive. She's a success story, one of the ones who's going to make it. But the vet who unselfishly saved her life up front needs to be reimbursed for basic costs, and that's expensive, especially when you consider the shape this sweet girl was in. The total came to more than $900, and all but the final $207.02 has been raised and paid. 

But that still leaves $207.02. So I'd like to show you what happened to this beautiful girl, so you can see what the new photo above really represents. I'm putting it over the jump, because It's not something to read or view over breakfast; make sure you're ready for the image and the description, which are heartbreaking. If your spirit can't take that kind of imagery, but you want to know how to give, here's the Facebook fundraiser link [note: it's in Spanish]. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Rough, Nugget, Boulder, Ribbon, Free-Form: What Do All These Terms Have In Common?

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

They're all forms of turquoise (or other gemstones, for that matter), in various stages of the process of getting it from the earth into a jewelry setting.

Yes, it's Turquoise Tuesday again over at The NDN Silver Blog. Something a little educational, interspersed with some really cool photos of turquoise stones and Indian jewelry using the stone in its various forms. Go take a look, a please share: both today's post, and the main page of Wings's Web site.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Cornerstones, Culture, and Community

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved. 

Today at The NDN Silver Blog, musings on culture and community prompted by imagery of ancient cornerstone, continually renewed.

It's an unusual image, one that looks like a painting. At a minimum, it appears to have been given digital effects to create a nearly two-dimensional appearance. It hasn't. It's an unaltered photo, the image altered only by Taos Pueblo's mysterious light and the effect it produces in one's own imagination.

Go take a look. See what it shows you. 

And, as always, shares via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the link are welcomed with gratitude, as a shares from the main page of Wings's site.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

"Rain Dancing"

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Yes, the title hangs from Wings's art, pictured above; the post hinges on it, open and close.

But in between are meditations and memories: of actual rain, and actual dancing, and it's his work that ties them all together in silken strands of silver and water.

Go take a look. And, of course, if you like it, you can always share it with others via the social-media buttons at the bottom of the page. Sharing the other pages, including the main page of his site, are welcome with thanks, too.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

A Showpiece of Earth and Sky

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Another day on the run; a lot to do to beat this afternoon's rain. Blessed, much-needed rain, like that hardened into the Skystone in the piece shown above.

So here's the daily pointer post to the lengthier piece on The NDN Silver Blog at Wings's Web site. Yes, it's a piece purely to feature his latest, but there's a lot in it. And that stone! You have to see that stone, up close and personal.

Social-media shares via the buttons at the bottom of all three linked pages are much appreciated.

And now, I'm off and running . . . .

Friday, July 11, 2014

Powwow Season!

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

Busy, busy day today, so here's your quick and dirty pointer post to today's entry at The NDN Silver Blog.

The image above is of one of the powwow-style drums in our inventory. There's a bit about it in the post, as well as some information about its maker, Lee Lujan, who is truly a master. [A few years ago, he created an upright drum that I so wanted, but it was out of our reach at the time. Taller than this, and a bit narrower, the handles emerged out of the trunk itself. One of the handles resembled an eagle's head, so he added a very, very subtle bit of carving to make the head obvious, and inlaid bits of pipestone for eyes. Incredible work of art.]

Back to the subject at hand: Today is the opening day of the 2014 Taos Pueblo Powwow. In the post is a bit about powwows generally; the cloudy etymology of the word; the history; the contemporary gathering; the drum as its heart and soul; and, of course, the rules.

No, we don't have a booth there to sell Wings's art. He doesn't do powwows anymore, or other events; the overhead is too high and the return far too low. Art like his doesn't sell at these sorts of events; too expensive.

And, as always, the powwow (which here is an outdoor event) will be partially rained out this weekend, of course. It happens every year. No matter what the year's monsoon season is like, even if it's completely on schedule and no real rain shows up until August, there's always, always an exception for Powwow Weekend. Only a 40% chance today, but tomorrow is upwards of 50%, and that usually means at least a cloudburst. It won't matter. They will simply call a rain delay in the dancing, if it occurs then, and then resume once it passes. And at night, the tow chains will come out to help get tourists with low-slung cars mired in the mud of the Buffalo Grounds out and on their way back to their hotel rooms.

And now, I am off to sprint through my day's to-do list. I'll be back late today to handle messages and comments and FB notifications and what have you (yes, I know I'm already two days behind on that). Likes and shares are welcomed, especially of the main page of Wings's Web site. And if you know of anyone in the market for the literal heartbeat of the dance, we have a beautiful one for sale in the photo above.

[And now our first unannounced visitor has just shown up, so I'm off . . . .]

Thursday, July 10, 2014

#TBT: Ancient Patterns, Ancient Paths

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

It's your daily pointer post, this time for Throwback Thursday.

This is the featured item at The NDN Silver Blog. It's a piece by master potter Angie Yazzie, and, yes, it is for sale, but it's not really the point of the post.

The post takes a path of its own, through a little history of Taos Pueblo's micaceous pottery, through the clay itself, through methods of turning the clay into works of art. It peruses ancient patterns, and follows ancient paths; it climbs down the kiva steps, and sets off into the four directions. It's a snapshot of an older time, with older ways, ways that are still followed even today.

Go check it out. See what you think. And, as always, shares from the social-media buttons at the linked pages on Wings's Web site are always welcome.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

"Peaks and Waters"

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
That's the name of today's entry over at The NDN Silver Blog on Wings's Web site.

It's also the name of the piece pictured above. There's a lot more than just the piece and its description at the link.

This will likely be it for me today. A major flare has been barreling down on me for some time now, and today seems to be the day that it decided to knock me off my feet, so to speak. I'll be fine; this happens periodically with my illness, and there's nothing to do except ride it out. But I may be mostly offline for a few days, other than posting his blog entries. If that's the case, don't worry if you don't see or hear from me; I'll be back as soon as I'm functional again.

In the meantime, all "likes," "shares," links, and other forms of getting the word out would be most welcome right now.  Thanks. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A Slur for Sacred Ground

Yosemite National ParkPhoto credit:  National Park Service
It's summer, which means it's hiking and campaign season. It's also national parks season.

Did you know that one of the nation's most beloved is named with a slur? It is, of course, manifestly stolen ground. That goes almost without saying. But few know how it came to be: to be stolen; to be claimed as community property in the name of the U.S. Government to be given a "new" name, with a complete absence of irony, that was nothing more than old epithet given new voice. 

My friend rb137 has been to this place, up close and personal. She knows it well. And she knows its history equally well. She's written about it here, and I'd like you to go and take a look.

There'll be a lot in her piece that you didn't know. There's a lot I didn't know. But I know now, and as I read her piece, I felt yet another little crack erupt across my heart, a new abrasion form in my soul. Because while she confines her words to what is well-established, she summons the spirit of what lies beneath. 

I know what lies beneath; our peoples have lived it — and died for it — for half a millennium now.

So go. Read. And then carry the story with you, when you visit, when you talk with others about this bit of national "hallowed ground." Because it's "hallowed" in ways that almost no one remembers, and that no one should ever be allowed to forget.

Turquoise Tuesdays!

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.
Today at The NDN Silver Blog we're launching a new weekly series: "Turquoise Tuesdays." It'll cover the Skystone in all its forms and facets, covering everything from types of turquoise to color variation to uses in traditional Native jewelry and more.

Today's post is an introduction and overview: a little geology, a little gemology, a little inspired and inspirited art and history.

Go check it out, and watch for future Tuesday editions that go into greater detail about this magnificent gemstone. And, of course, social-media shares from the link (and of Wings's Web site generally) are very welcome.


Monday, July 7, 2014

Sun and Shadows

Photo copyright Wings, 2014; all rights reserved.

I know, I know. I've written a lot about interstices lately, and it's mostly difficult stuff. [Some of it, while seeming not to be directly on point, in fact is, and is difficult in the extreme.]

But this is different.

This is a meditation on imagery, via one of Wings's photo entries in his recent show. It's much more pleasant, even if not exactly easy; it does require some thought.

And it's up now at The NDN Silver Blog.

Go take a look, and use the social-media buttons at the link to share if you're so inclined.  Thanks.