108 is the magic number of holy necklaces from religions around the world. The rosary. The mala. Even in Native American traditions 108 mountain laurel seeds (used by Medicine Men to visit the Spirit World) could be traded for a horse. In this series of holy necklaces, I took objects form my life and strung them together to suggest it is not the material that makes the necklace holy but rather the 108 number seemingly connecting us all together. Because isn’t there more that connects than separates really?
This necklace is a cross section between African (Nigeria) and Mexican symbolism - both civilizations that were / are mistreated though they were native to the places that were invaded. The beads are vinyl and come from my Mother at the height of the 90’s. The Mexican Milagros come from Mexico and were a gift from a sweet woman we collectively called “Abuelita” - “Granny”. The 5 Milagros I chose for this necklace are protection charms. This necklace is wearable but heavy due to the vinyl discs. I hand strung them in a 25:1 ration in the pattern of a rosary but with the finished product more traditionally similar to an African necklace. The discs that were broken received a treatment of Gold; a Universally recognized symbol for Holiness.