This delightful figure is our latest acquisition from this celebrated sculptor. We are especially pleased to acquire Joe Cajero’s original clay works, as he is increasingly involved in producing bronze editions of his pieces.The super-star artist is famous for his virtuoso, naturalistic, sculpting (down to the ears!). He has received countless prizes and awards for his work, most recently designated a “Local Treasure” (along with his wife, Althea!) by the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, in Santa Fe.
This charming and complex sculpture is made with his well-known skill, and radiates good humor. Koshares are Pueblo clowns who amuse with all sorts of antics. Here, the clown is taking on the persona of a sensitive artist. The marvelously natural modeling of the figure, realistic in proportion and detail, is matched by the graining painted on the “wooden stump”. Except for the vivid colors on his clay palette, and the watermelon painting itself, all the colors are natural. The easel is hand made of twigs, and painted. The decorated olla is a real, traditionally formed pot. The figure and its accoutrements are traditionally made, of hand-gathered clay and clay slips, and wild spinach paint
Koshares are often linked with watermelons, since there is no way to eat a slice of watermelon delicately, and that’s the fun. Here, our Koshare-artist is painting a slice of watermelon against a cloud-dappled sky, on top of a stepped adobe. Even this is done in loving, and lovely, detail. The Koshare is charmingly detailed, as well: Notice the teeth, eyes and ears, the hand delicately holding the paintbrush, the floppy moccasins, the folds in the kilt, etc.
This is one of this wonderful artist’s original, one-of-a-kind works, and it is one of the most complex. These remarkable, original clay works are increasingly rare, as Joe is more and more involved with creating bronze editions of his pieces.