Legoria Tafoya Polished Blackware Bowl with Twisted Handles


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Legoria Tafoya, Santa Clara Pueblo Potter

This polished blackware bowl was created by Legoria Tafoya of Santa Clara Pueblo. It has a smooth, shallow form, with two handles made of twisted clay coils. The handles form arches over circular holes, which are centered right at the bowl's rim. The interior, exterior and handles are highly polished.

Painted designs appear in the bowl's interior. They are centered around a dotted line, which travels through the center of the bowl from one handle to the other. Clouds and lightning appear on one side, and plant elements on the other; perhaps the dotted line in the center represents the rain drops that link the two together. Whatever the artist's intention might have been, she created a wonderful composition on a beautiful vessel.

Artist signature of Legoria Tafoya, Santa Clara Pueblo PotterThe bottom of the dish is signed Legoria, Sta Clara Pueblo.

Legoria Tafoya (1911-1984), painter Pablita Velarde, and potter Jane Baca were sisters. Legoria was the oldest and Pablita the youngest. Legoria devoted her career to making traditional black pottery in the Santa Clara Pueblo style, as did Baca. They were taught the art of pottery making by their grandmother in the 1930s. Legoria's early works were mostly animal figurines, which came to be extremely popular with tourists. She went on to become a celebrated potter, winning many awards and placing works in prominent collections. All three sisters exhibited at Enchanted Mesa Gallery in Albuquerque, which was owned by Fred and Margarete Chase.

Condition: good condition with a few very small abrasions

Provenance: this Legoria Tafoya Polished Blackware Bowl with Twisted Handles is from a private Colorado collection

Reference: Pueblo Indian Pottery: 750 Artist Biographies by Gregory Schaaf

TAGS: Pablita VelardepotteryAlbuquerquefigurinesSanta Clara PuebloSanta FeLegoria Tafoya

Alternate view of this bowl from the side.


Legoria Tafoya, Santa Clara Pueblo Potter
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