Zuni fetishes, known to the Shiwi people as wemawe, are small stone animal carvings that are made by the talented artisans of Zuni Pueblo. Zuni is located in New Mexico in the "Four Corners" region of the US of A.
Zuni fetish carvings are a part of the Zuni religion which is extremely complex. Perhaps due to their remote location, the Zuni people have been able to retain a great deal of their culture and religion despite being among the most studied Native American people by anthropologists, past and present.
In their culture, Zuni fetish carvings represent the animal spirit thought to reside in the stone. Initially Zuni fetishes were likely found stones that had the rudimentary shape of an animal. Arrowheads were placed on the stones with a prayer that the hunter's arrow would find its mark and in gratitude for the animal giving its life for the sustenance of the hunter and his family.
The Zunis believe in six sacred directions, Above, North, East, South, West and Below.
Carved Out of Bone
2.5" x 1 3/4 "