Cowboys & Indians

SUPER SILVERSMITH

MATTHEW CHARLEY CAN BE A HARD MAN TO GET AHOLD OF. CELL PHONE SERVICE IS sketchy to nonexistent on the Navajo reservation in northwestern New Mexico where he currently lives. But when he does connect, Charley is generous in conversation about his jewelry-making and humble about the buzz and demand for his high-quality Navajo statement pieces.

“I’m currently working on a squash blossom necklace with Royston turquoise and a traditional Navajo bow-guard bracelet,” says the 26-year-old, conducting the interview not in his New Mexico studio but at almost 10,000 feet, on top of Eagle Peak in the Tularosa Mountains in the Gila National Forest.

Born in the small town of Gallup, New Mexico, which borders the southeastern region of the Navajo reservation, Charley has been creating jewelry since the age of 15. “I

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