A Posting by Malcolm Bob, BUSI Intern
Each of the Navajo Cultural Arts Certificate students project a unique personality. Everyone of them stands out in their own way. They have consistently displayed the dedication they have to their craft. Conversing with the students over the past weeks has shown what type of person they are when working their pieces.
Every artisan takes pride in certain aspects of their work. For Carlon P. Ami, he prides himself on precision and style. He contradicts himself by either creating pieces in the classic Navajo Style or taking an extremely contemporary turn. Carlon loves to use thick and heavy silver in his work and the finished products show why. He pays arduous attention to every detail of every piece. Carlon mentions that he wants to make pieces that are different. His intent is to make something that no one else is making.
I was lucky enough to have an early view of one of Carlon’s recent projects. After a conversation with him about the NCAP website, he offered to drive home, which he said was just down the road, to bring over a bracelet he had recently completed. Fifteen minutes later, he came with two bracelets, one complete with stones and the other with the stones removed. He then told me the story of his two bracelets.
The bracelet is undeniably beautiful but he stated it isn’t prefect. Carlon showed me a couple of areas of the bracelet that he is not particularly happy with. He said if he was making it for sale he would been more precise. The stamping on the bezels surrounding the stones did not meet perfectly. There are spots where the seam between the bezel and base plate is obvious. Carlon stated that the first bracelet is always a prototype, the second is always perfect. He uses prototypes to investigate new design ideas and to develop the technique necessary to bring the design to fruition.
Carlon shared with me a lot about his technique and the sourcing of his materials. He is definitely an Emerging Artist who will benefit the Navajo Cultural Arts Program as much as the program benefits him.
If you are interested in checking out some more of Carlon’s work that is for sale please visit the Smoking Trails Arts and Craft at the Hopi Cultural Center in Shungopovi or the Museum of Northern Arizona Gift Shop in Flagstaff.
A posting by Sharon Begay, BUSI Intern
Yesterday evening, I had the privilege of talking to Hank Blair, proud owner of Totsoh Trading Post and well known Auctioneer of R.B Burnham Auctioneers about his experience and knowledge of Rug Auctions. The purpose of my visit was to get an understanding of the process of hosting a Rug Auction that will support Dine College's Navajo Cultural Arts Program. Mr. Blair’s daughters, Cheryl and Connette also provided input throughout the discussion on Rug Auctions.
On the business side of hosting a Rug Auction, the majority of the work is done beforehand, i.e. selection of location, advertising, facilities, personnel, and equipment. A successful Rug Auction is determined by the host understanding the relationship with the audience. According to Mr. Blair, who has been in the Rug Auction business for over 20 years, weavers and buyers go to Rug Auctions where they know the people running the auction. R.B Burnham Auctioneers have established a reputation of being honest, therefore they have established a following of weavers and buyers who participate in Auctions they are a part of. In addition, rug buyers and weavers participate in these auctions because they have an appreciation of the design, quality, color, firmness and originality of a rug. To me, that makes it all about reputation.
The process of becoming an excellent and reputable Rug Auctioneer is directly related to the Marketing concept of the 4 P’s; Place, Product, Promotion, and Price, which equates to putting the right product in the right place, at the right price, at the right time.
From this, I have learned that a Rug Auction must be run in a businesslike manner with the right personnel. In addition, location and advertising are crucial towards having a successful rug auction.
A posting by Christine M. Ami, NCAP Grant Manager
Behind the NCAP there are some BUSI people.
BUSI is the nickname that the NCAP has been fondly using to organize Business BA students who are completing their senior year internship with our program. These Business Interns (aka BUSI) are responsible for the some of the inner workings of our program that support our Emerging Artisans and promote community outreach.
Malcolm Bob is in the process of creating a unique NCAP website, establishing social media presence, and designing a plan for the online consignment store.
Sharon Begay is studying the inner workings of Native American cultural arts auctions, working toward the hosting of two NCAP sponsored events: a Silent Auction to take place in June and a Rug Auction tentatively scheduled for late summer.
Falencia Brown is our newest intern and will be studying inventory systems as we create a check out system for our NCAP material and resource room.
In addition to their individualized objectives, the BUSI meet every Wednesday at 8:00am to discuss challenges and successes that we face throughout the week. We also get to bounce ideas off of each other. Just this past Wednesday we were evaluating draft NCAP logo designs sent to us by Graphic Designer Corey Begay. We are excited to be working with Corey, who also works with Salinas Bookshelf, and can’t wait to display our official logo in March at the Inauguration of our Lecture Series.
The BUSI also keep occupied working side by side with the Emerging Artisans. During NIS129: Navajo Cultural Arts Selling Practices, BASET faculty Medhat Farooque joined CDS faculty Martha Jackson in presenting business plans to the NCAC cohort. After their presentations, the BUSI got busy helping cohort members organize the groundwork for their potential businesses.
They may be BUSI but never too busy to stop and chat. So don’t forget to say “Yá’át’ééh” when you see Malcolm, Sharon, and Falencia and ask them about the latest NCAP happenings!
A post by Malcolm Bob, Business Intern
Yesterday I had the opportunity to visit the NCAC cohort in their silversmithing class. They were very welcoming and excited to know that the content I will gather is going on the Website and other social media. I told them that what I am doing will give the program better presence on the web and expose them to the world. Overall I had a great time gathering images for the program.