Now 80 years old, this matriarch of Jemez pottery was recently honored as a Local Treasure. As well as this award, and many more, she is credited with reviving the serious (as opposed to “tourist” quality) pottery tradition at her pueblo. She taught her daughters, award-winning potters Glendora Fragua and BJ Fragua, and also her nationally celebrated sculptor son, Cliff Fragua. She may be starting her ninth decade, but this lady is a smart little bundle of energy. Her artistry continues to amaze and delight.
A flowering vine is featured, curling decoratively around the shoulder of this piece,. Rows of triangular shapes parade around the rim, and the middle, filled in with diagonal fine lines, signifying rain. A band of rain cloud designs brings the dark brown/black of the vine and the triangles down to the bottom of the design.
Entirely made by hand, in the traditional manner, of hand-gathered, mixed, coiled, smoothed, and painted local clays. The russet color is Jemez-area red clay slip, and the dark designs are painted with brewed wild spinach plants. The beige is the natural hue of clay.
Sprightly, decorative, and traditional, with a twist, this very charming piece is a wonderful piece of Pueblo pottery history, too.