Vintage Silver Cigarette Lighter with Frank Patania Artistic Cover by Frank Patania, Sr.

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Frank Patania, Sr., Thunderbird Studio Jewelry
  • Category: Silver Objects
  • Origin: Western Artists
  • Medium: silver, turquoise, lighter
  • Size: 1-⅞” x 2-⅛”
  • Item # C4464Q
  • Price: $895

This commercial Ronson cigarette lighter was sheathed in a silver blanket and embellished with an exquisite turquoise and silver “yucca” plant.  It bears the initials FP (Frank Patania), the Thunderbird Studio logo, and Sterling. The cigarette lighter is no longer functional.

Frank Patania, Sr., signature hallmark are the initials FP, the Thunderbird Studio Jewelry logo, and the word Sterling.

Frank Patania, Sr. (1899-1964) was an internationally known silversmith and owner of the Thunderbird Studio in Santa Fe. His work is highly sought by collectors familiar with the Southwest.  Frank Patania helped native artisans refine gemstone setting and other techniques. He was mentor and employer to Pueblo silversmiths Julian Lovato of Santo Domingo Pueblo and Louis Lamay from Hopi Pueblo.  Frank Patania was Sicilian by birth but was living in Santa Fe in the 1950s.

During the mid-twentieth century, the Thunderbird Studio in Santa Fe was a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. It was not just a gift shop, but was a place where people gathered to catch up on local events as well as to buy gifts. Set on the plaza across from the La Fonda Hotel, visitors often included Mabel Dodge Luhan and Georgia O’Keeffe.  Frank Patania hired only the most talented and skilled smiths and oversaw their work with exacting precision. The result was a body of work that is instantly recognizable for its quality and style.


Condition: the Patania work is in very good condition, the lighter is not functional.

Provenance: this Vintage Silver Cigarette Lighter with Frank Patania Artistic Cover by Frank Patania, Sr. is  from a Colorado gentleman collector of Native jewelry

Recommended Reading: Southwest Silver Jewelry by Paula Baxter

Relative Links: Santa FeKewa - Santo Domingo PuebloHopi ReservationJulian LovatoFrank Patania, Jr.Frank Patania, Sr.,

Frank Patania, Sr., Thunderbird Studio Jewelry
  • Category: Silver Objects
  • Origin: Western Artists
  • Medium: silver, turquoise, lighter
  • Size: 1-⅞” x 2-⅛”
  • Item # C4464Q
  • Price: $895

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