Mineral Earth Painting of a Pueblo Woman Grinding White Corn [SOLD]


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Pablita Velarde, Santa Clara Pueblo Painter

Special Value Offer: we have been authorized to offer this at a 20% price reduction from the original price of $5500 to a new price of $4400.

Although not the most common of her subject matter, the activities of daily life struck her mind in photographic detail. Pablita Velarde was keenly aware of the activities in the Pueblo and she watched her aunts and the other members of the Pueblo make pottery, plaster walls, and of course, grind corn. Few people perceive their surroundings with the heightened sensitivity that Pablita Velarde did. She had no interest in making pottery, she was much more interested in painting the scenes she was witnessing.


This painting of a woman grinding corn – an ordinary occurrence in the Pueblos – is anything but ordinary. The detail of the woman’s dress, the rendering of each kernel of corn and the simple yet expressive composition of the background steps all come together to set the scene masterfully. It is exactly this ability that earned her several mural commissions at Bandelier National Monument under the Works Progress Administration [WPA] program.


Signature of the artist: Pablita Velarde (1918-2006) Tse Tsan - Golden DawnShe executed this painting in the mineral earth materials for which she was famous.  She would grind up mineral elements into a fine powder which she stored in jars until time to use them for paintings. She would then mix these powders with glue and water and use them as paints. This painting is signed in the lower right, but not dated.


Condition: very good condition.

Recommended Reading

"Woman’s Work" The Art of Pablita Velarde by Sally Hyer. This book is not available from Adobe Gallery.

Pablita Velarde - Painting Her People by Marcella Ruch, et al.  We actually have a copy available for sale - click here for all the details.

Provenance: from a gentleman from Santa Fe

Pablita Velarde, Santa Clara Pueblo Painter
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