Red Bear Paw Pot
A new generation of this “royal family” of potters makes a spectacular debut.
Jamelyn is the daughter of James Eberlacker, granddaughter of the late Virginia Eberlacker, and great-granddaughter of the late Margaret Tafoya, the grande dame of Santa Clara pottery.
Margaret Tafoya was an innovator on a par with Maria Martinez of San Ildefonso, and Nampeyo, of Hopi.
A senior at the Institute of American Indian Arts, in Santa Fe, Jamelyn very obviously has inherited the prodigious talents of her famous, award-winning, family.
This elegantly formed olla is totally unadorned, except for the impressed bear paw which is a family tradition shared with other Santa Clara potters, as it is part of their lore.
With its perfectly balanced and proportioned shape, the pot has a monumental and serene quality.
Totally traditional in execution, this imposing olla is made of local clay that was gathered, mixed, coiled, smoothed and stone-polished entirely by hand. It was also pit-fired, just as in centuries before.
The luster is achieved by patiently rubbing the flower-pot textured clay with a stone that fits comfortably into the artist’s palm.
Eventually, the potter achieves this beautifully gleaming surface, that begs to be caressed.
This ravishing olla seems to radiate a shapely grace and a timeless presence.
With a family history of legendary potters behind her, it is exciting to welcome a new generation artist who is continuing their high tradition of classic, exquisite, hand made pottery.