This is a rare early Thunderbird bolo tie also recently renamed as a Hopi Bird, which was made in the 1940's. This great old piece has the most vibrant colors of jet, mother of pearl, red abalone shell, and Blue Gem Turquoise which is very green. The channel inlay work is fabulous and so is the silver work. The bird is punctuated with raindrops and edged with fine stamp work. The stones were all hand cut and buffed to fit the mosaic inlay work. This pin has several signature characteristics of Frank Vacit's work. It's an exceptional piece and this style of Frank Vacit's work is well documented in the book "Hopi Bird and Sun Face in Zuni Jewelry." Page 66 documents this style of work as Frank Vacit's. Frank Vacit was born in 1915, lived till 1999, and worked from the 1930s. He was one of the most talented and great artists in Zuni history. His work resides in the best galleries and museums and he is discussed in every major work. His pieces fetch the highest prices, justifiably.
The inlay and every aspect of this bolo tie is in excellent vintage condition, without problems. The Thunderbird has original matching tip dangles. There's some minor age appropriate wear to the stones but no damage. The figures are unsigned, which is common for that period of time and not marked for silver content but has tested as sterling silver. The Thunderbird is 2 5/8" long x 1 5/8" at the widest point. The tips are 2 7/8" long from the top of the silver cone to the bottom of the Thunderbird. The Thunderbird tip measures 2" long x 7/8" at the widest point. The braided leather tie is 40" long.
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