Historic Blackware Vessel with Diagonal Impressions


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Sara Fina Tafoya, Santa Clara Pueblo Potter

This blackware vessel was created by a Santa Clara Pueblo potter—most likely Santa Clara Pueblo Matriarch Sara Fina Tafoya. We'd estimate that it dates to the 1920s or 1930s. Adobe Gallery attributes the vessel to Sara Fina Tafoya, because the age lines up and many published examples of the influential matriarch's work feature impressed designs.

This is an unusual form—low and wide like a serving bowl, but with the type of shoulder and rim that would appear on a jar. A rainbow band appears at the shoulder, and a series of diagonal impressions appears just below.

As is to be expected, there are no painted designs. The vessel was slipped and stone polished to the moderate intensity preferred by potters of the era.  Matriarch Sara Fina Tafoya (circa 1863-1950) Autumn Leaf polished the interior as well, adding visual depth to an area that many potters leave unadorned. This is a beautiful and unique example of twentieth century Santa Clara Pueblo blackware pottery.

Condition: good condition, light abrasions and some materials accumulated on exterior

Provenance: this Historic Blackware Vessel with Diagonal Impressions is from a private collection of a client of Adobe Gallery

References and Recommended Reading:

- King, Charles S. Born of Fire: The Life and Pottery of Margaret Tafoya, Museum of New Mexico Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2008.

- Blair, Mary Ellen, and Laurence Blair. Margaret Tafoya: A Tewa Potter's Heritage and Legacy, Schiffer Publishing, West Chester, Pennsylvania. 1986.

TAGS: Santa Clara PuebloSara Fina TafoyaMargaret Tafoya, Joseph LonewolfGrace Medicine Flower

Alternate view of this beautiful blackware pottery vessel.

Sara Fina Tafoya, Santa Clara Pueblo Potter
C4730-19-sara-fina.jpgC4730-19-large.jpg Click on image to view larger.