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What is obsidian?

Obsidian is a naturally occurring volcanic glass which forms when lava from a volcano cools down quickly. Obsidian comes in many different colors such a reddish brown, golden green, rainbow, silver sheen and the most common, black. Obsidian has a naturally reflective surface which can be polished to a mirror-like finish. Obsidian is also a very sharp material and can be used as a knife or tool.
Many people also believe obsidian to be a very powerful stone as it can be used in meditation practices or placed around the home to detract negative ideas and transform them into positive thoughts and actions.
In the pre-Columbian era, obsidian was used for many different purposes such as weapons or hunting utensils, for meditation and for decorative objects such as the ones in our store.
Obsidian was a great inspiration for pre-Columbian cultures throughout North America and Mexico. It has been present in spiritual practices as well as rituals, art, war, kitchenware and of course jewelry. Obsidian helped shape pre-Hispanic cultures and greatly contributed to the economy of ancient communities as it was used by all social hierarchies.
Many miners have been employed to extract this volcanic glass and obtaining as a result a mystical material of deep colors for the creation of our decorative pieces, jewelry and accessories.

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How is our work created?

The first step is to obtain the obsidian from mines in and around Teotihuacan, Mexico. A single piece of obsidian is used for each creation, which is why sizes and shapes can vary even in seemingly similar pieces. Some of our sculptures and pieces are made solely of obsidian, while others can be decorated with different semi-precious stones such as lapis lazuli, sodalite, opal and opalite, tiger’s eye, malachite, amazonite, jade, aventurine of all colors, amethyst, quartz and goldstone. We also use shells such as mother of pearl and abalone. When the pieces are not decorated with other stones they are carved and polished but when the pieces are inlaid with other materials, they are carved, inlaid and finally polished. Most of our pieces take anywhere from 1 day to carve and polish up to several months for completion. Each piece may be worked on by more than one different artists and each artists will add his own touch and flair to the final creation. Due to the nature of the product, some pieces may have imperfections or irregularities from the obsidian itself. These are not defects but rather part of the natural stone.

About Teotihuacan

Teotihuacan (Teh-oh-tee-wa-can) was one of the most important cities in pre-Hispanic Mesoamerica. It was rediscovered by the Mexica after the city was left in ruins by its original inhabitants centuries before. The original name of the city is unknown to this day as well as any information about its builders and inhabitants. The name Teotihuacan which was given to the city by the Mexica comes from the Nahuatl language which can be translated as “the city where men become Gods.” Teotihuacan is located in the Valley of Mexico, approximately 80km away from Mexico City. In 1987 Teotihuacan was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

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TEOTIHUACAN

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