An Artifact is an object imbued with a steady source of Deific energy, such as a weapon, piece of armor, or any other kind of tool, garment or ornament. Most commonly, it takes the form of a "magic item", such as enchanted sword. It can, however, be any object, such as a building or rock. It can not be an organism, which is a Champion by definition. An object given intelligence becomes a mortal being and is therefore also a Champion, so a Deity can not give an Artifact intelligence. Of course, a Deity can create a Champion that looks like a sword and conceals its intelligence, but it is still a Champion and not an Artifact.
Deities can share Artifacts, with two or more Deities supplying the Deific Energy that powers it. In this case, the Artifacts assumes the powers given to it by each Deity in respective proportions, so if one Deity provides 70% of the Energy, then that Deity's Zones must power 70% of the Artifact's powers.