Bryans Gallery

Southwest Native American Arts and Jewelry in Taos since 1982

Turquoise Corn Maiden by Faye Quandelacy

170.00
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Turquoise Corn Maiden by Faye Quandelacy

170.00

Small corn maiden, hand-carved turquoise inlaid with red coral by master carver Faye Quandelacy. 

Approx: 1.875" x 1" x .5" 

 

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Small corn maiden, hand-carved turquoise inlaid with red coral by master carver Faye Quandelacy. 

Approx: 1.875" x 1" x .5" 

 

Zuni Corn Maidens

Corn is identified with the feminine.  

Corn Maidens are sometimes called Grandmother of Light or Grandmother of the Sun. The carvings represent the supernatural beings that emerged from the Middle World at the same time the Zuni people did. There are various stories about the Corn Maidens, their leaving and return to the Zuni land. Corn Maidens are key elements in many of the Zuni celebrations and rituals. There are eight Corn Maidens; the Maiden of the West has a tray of blue corn, the Maiden of the East has white corn, the Maiden of the North carries yellow corn, the Maiden of the South has red corn, one Maiden carries black corn, and one Maiden carries multi-colored corn.

Zuni Corn Maidens are carved by hand from a number of beautiful and unique materials that range from antler, turquoise, coral, shell, fossilized ivory, jet, serpentine, lapis lazuli, amber and other stones. Sandra and Faye Quandelacy created the three figured, dual sided Corn Maidens. The robe on a Corn Maiden is an older design. Mature Corn Maidens are depicted without corn kernels and have richer robes. The garments on a Corn Maiden can have various pottery designs associated with the different rain elements. Dragonflies portrayed by a vertical line crossed with two horizontal lines on the robes, are messengers who carry prayers to the spirit world. These creatures lay their eggs in water. Dragonflies mean water. Where there is water, there is life. Some Corn Maidens carry offerings of crushed turquoise. Some carry trays of corn. Adornments by the artists are offerings quite beautiful. Corn Maidens can be carved to fit in the palm of the hand, and others are table top, museum quality carvings.