Rosary and jewelry box

Object Number: 
2000.160ab
Date: 
1969-1986
Medium: 
Silver, gold, amethyst, jade, pearls
Dimensions: 
Overall: 19 1/2 x 1 x 5/8 in. (49.5 x 2.5 x 1.6 cm) Container (box): 1 3/4 × 2 5/8 × 2 3/4 in. (4.4 × 6.7 × 7 cm)
Marks: 
stamped: on the base: "PLIEGO" below a two-faced Mexican Venus between two scrolls, all in an elongated hexagon between "HANDWROUGHT" and "STERLING"
Description: 
Amethyst, pearl, jade and gold rosary beads in a silver, gold, amethyst, jade and pearl jewelry box; circualr silver box with a domed lid with a raised gold Greek cross at the top; circular amethysts set between the arms of the cross with elongated gold decorations down the side; interior of lid decorated with a gold greek cross with punched crosses; base raised to an interior siver dome with cutwork decoration set with pearls, amethyst and jade; gold rosary with amethyst and pearl beads, , gold greek cross set with pearls between the arms and jade in the centes; cross sits in the circular opening in the interior dome; maker's marks stamped on the base.
Gallery Label: 
A Mexican-born silversmith, Juan Pliego settled in New York in 1965 and studied silversmithing with master silversmith William Seitz at the YMCA on Eighth Avenue and Fiftieth Street. Pliego soon became Seitz's assistant and replaced him as instructor in 1974. In 1980, Pliego established his own studio, the J. P. Crafts Studio, on East Twenty-first Street. Many of his objects incorporate precious and semi-precious stones, such as amethyst, opal, chalcedony, sapphire, malachite, lapis lazuli, and jade. Pliego's exquisite boxes also incorporate gold and other metals, resins, and enamel. His influences were far-ranging, from Aztec and Mayan design-a nod to his Central American roots-to Egyptian metalwork, discovered during his travels around the Mediterranean and in Asia. In 2000, Pliego donated nearly all the objects he made during his career to the Historical Society: fifty-three small boxes and forty-three additional objects including bowls, goblets, and a coffee set.
Credit Line: 
Gift of Juan Pliego
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group