This distinctive collection of wearable art jewelry represents the talent of Doug Hancock (1941-2017) and Mary Hancock. Doug’s years as an archeologist in Central America, excavating from Mayan sites in the Guatemalan jungle, inspired the course of this couple’s artistry. Seeing such a variety of interesting relics unearthed from the ground inspired Mary, with her education and experience in fashion design, to begin creating jewelry pieces influenced by what she saw excavated. Her work became such a smashing success that she and Doug began working together to create their striking line of jewelry.
Relics of ancient Native American cultures in the Southwest are the inspiration for most of The Mummy’s Bundle wearable art jewelry featured at Turquoise Tortoise Gallery. “There is a universal wish to connect with the past,” Doug had explained. “The canyon walls and caves of the southwest are filled with the substance and spirit we try to convey in much of our work.”
The Mummy’s Bundle produces many pieces that feature replicas of pictographs from sites such as Canyon de Chelly, Canyon del Muerto and the Lyman Lake area, all in Arizona, as well as Three Rivers in New Mexico and other impressive sites. Other pieces feature traditional Navajo (Diné) silver buttons and still others White Heart Beads - beads that were heavily traded by the Hudson's Bay Trading Company and that were perhaps their main type of trade beads offered to Native Americans. This style of bead was invented in the late 1400s: red glass is colored using actual gold, causing bead makers to use it sparingly; a less costly color would therefore be used for the inside of the bead and by 1860 only white was used inside, hence the bead’s name.
“Being able to share our love for the cultures and relics of the past through our jewelry is extremely rewarding,” Mary has noted. “It provided us with a marvelous excuse to travel, to see the places we wanted and to discover new ideas we could utilize in our work.” Since Doug’s passing, Mary Hancock has committed herself to continuing to create wearable art jewelry that allows her to share with others all the archaeological, historical and cultural elements that had so captured Doug’s imagination and to continue bringing these elements to others through her exquisite jewelry designs.
For today’s fashion-conscious art connoisseur The Mummy’s Bundle is a singular and must-see collection of wearable art jewelry.