Recognized as a talented Native American Contemporary Jeweler, his numerous awards have established his work as outstanding artistry in lapidary art. He has an exceptional reputation for creating cutting edge modern inlay jewelry. His extensive knowledge of stone cutting; such as turquoise, sugalite, coral, jade, etc., comes from the many years of working on his lapidary techniques. His advanced techniques allow him to be versatile and creative; he incorporates his talent of lapidary and dramatically transforms and creates the exquisite inlay that he is recognized in jewelry artistry today.
His designs are original, hand made works of art. All of his art is an original one of a kind creation. He works with both gold and silver using the finest and rarest quality natural stones that come from all parts of the world that are available in todays world market. Many jewelry items are on display throughout the world, in museums and private collections, along with many galleries throughout North America, Australia and Europe.
He has acquired many awards for his jewelry designs. In 1997 he was awarded the prestigious SWAIA, Fellowship Award for Excellence in American Indian Art. His awards and venues are numerous; The National Museum of American Indian ( Washington, D.C. and New York City), Museum of Arizona, Museum of Indian Arts and Culture ( recently awarded in May 2008, the prestigious purchase award for the permanent collection ), Heard Museum, Eiteljorg Museum, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center and The Southwest Museum.
He is an advocate for the authenticity of Native American art. He participates in several art organizations that promote the cultural significance and preservation of authenticity values.
He is currently the President of the Indian Arts and Crafts Association, IACA, and has been in this capacity for the last three years. IACA, promotes authentic Native American Art and provides opportunities for artist to find national and international venues to sell their art. He served as Vice President and Board Member of the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts, SWAIA, which is the premier organization in the U.S.A. for promoting the finest in Native American Art and hosting the annual Santa Fe Indian Market.
In 1997 while in London, England he met with representatives of Harrods of London to promote Authentic Native American Art in London, England. He is currently working on International opportunities for American Indian Artists with several leading American Indian Art organizations to promote International marketing, educational and cultural exchanges.
NaNa Ping is also a strong advocate of sharing his knowledge by having teaching jewelry classes at the POEH Art Center, which is a cultural preservation learning institution for the Pueblo People in Northern New Mexico. As a strong believer of sharing knowledge, he has participated in several cultural exchange programs in Australia to teach lapidary art. He also coordinated several Aborigine exchanges to participate in the Santa Fe Indian Market to experience the American Indian culture in New Mexico.
He was Honored by special invitation to participate in the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian in September of 2004, in Washington D.C. where he exhibited his work with 35 leading Native American Artist who were selected from across the Nation of American Indian Artists. He continues to participate with the National Museum of the American Indian for presentations and demonstrations of his work.
NaNa Ping has generations of family that were jewelry inlayers. His life long inspirations come from his uncles who were master cutters and jewelers. His paternal family are decedents of the ancient Mayan culture.
NaNa Ping in an enrolled tribal member of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe from the Village of Guadalupe, located outside of Tempe Arizona. His cultural beliefs and ties to his family and Tribal Elders continue to be intuitively strong. He draws heavily from his heritage to create his unique style jewelry. Yaqui Elders tell of the traditions of their origin; which speak of the Pascua Yaqui people coming from the stars to live where they are today. Many of NaNa Pings jewelry pieces detail the universe with stars and planets in the inner beauty jewelry he creates. ( Jewelry pieces that depict these symbols on the inside of his jewelry pieces, also depicting that beauty comes from within).
While initiating his career in art he studied business at the University of New Mexico and earned a B.A. in Business. He also spent many years in the graphic and printing business, but always maintained his passion for creating and designing jewelry.
He is grateful for the traditions that he carries and honors his ancestors for the talent they inspired. His Grandfather was a medicine man with a strong intuitive nature and strong in his culture beliefs.
NA Na Ping lives with his family on the Nambe Pueblo reservation. When he came to live with the Tewa people his wifes grandfather, in ceremony, gave him his indian name NaNa Ping which translates to Aspen Mountain. All his works are hallmarked NaNa Ping on the inside of each unique piece of jewerly.