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Black on Black Small Jar signed Marie [SOLD]


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Maria Montoya Poveka Martinez (1887-1980) Pond Lily
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Origin: San Ildefonso Pueblo
  • Medium: clay
  • Size: 4-1/2” height x 4-3/4” diameter
  • Item # C3979B
  • SOLD

As published by Richard Spivey, Maria and Julian began producing plain polished black pottery around 1912 and Black-on-black pottery around 1919-1920. Julian continued to paint Maria’s pottery until his untimely death in 1943. It was around 1925 that Julian’s name began to appear alongside Maria’s on their pottery. So, we see that there is only a period of about 18 years when the co-signed pottery was made.

Artist Signature - Maria Montoya Poveka Martinez (1887-1980) Pond LilyBefore Julian's name was added on their pottery, only the name Marie appeared, even though Julian was painting the matte black design.  The reasoning for his name not being added was that making pottery was woman's work.  It was around 1925 before Maria added Julian's name to decorated blackware, after being convinced that he was performing as a painter and not doing woman’s work of making pottery.  This jar, then, would date between 1920-1925.  It is one of the earlier classic vessel shapes that Maria made.

Julian placed a simple band of design just below the shoulder.  Each horizontal section contains a pair of triangular shaped elements.  There are four of these panels.  It is these early vessels that display unique shapes and designs.  Later, Julian settled on the more standard Avanyu and feather designs which became the favorite of collectors.

It is these early creations by Maria and Julian that show each of their creative talents—in shape and design.  So many of these classic ones that were made in the 1920s have been broken, damaged, or lost over the last hundred years.  Some were used as flower pots or vases and were severely damaged from water.  This one appears to have had water in it as well, however, it survived in good condition.

Condition: there is some calcium residue on the interior rim and there is a small section on the lower body that shows abrasions due to water seeping through the wall.  It is only noticeable if examined closely.  Overall, the jar is in good condition.

Provenance: this Black on Black Small Jar signed Marie is from the collection of a gentleman from Washington, D. C.

Reference: The Legacy of Maria Poveka Martinez by Richard L. Spivey

Close up view of side panel design.