Robert Tenorio Version of a Santo Domingo Pueblo Aguilar Style Pottery Jar

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Robert Tenorio, Kewa Pueblo Potter
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Origin: Kewa - Santo Domingo Pueblo
  • Medium: clay, pigment
  • Size: 7” height x 8” diameter
  • Item # C4247
  • Price: $1,650.00

Two sisters at Santo Domingo Pueblo developed a style of decorating pottery that used large areas of black, outlined with thin lines of cream slip.  Another style used large areas of black and red, outlined too with thin lines of cream slip. The sisters are known as the Aguilars and, of course, their pottery as the Aguilar Style. Following their retirements or deaths around 1915, their style of pottery was confined to the shelves of Julius Seligman, the Bernalillo merchant.  No one else seemed to pursue it.

Sometime, probably in the mid 20th century, Santana Melchor, also of Santo Domingo, revived, on a small scale, the Aguilar pottery style. There is an example of one of her pieces on display at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture in Santa Fe. Sometime in the early 2000s, Robert Tenorio experimented with the style, too. This jar is an example of one of his masterpieces.

Robert is indisputably one of the finest potters of the 20th century from Santo Domingo Pueblo. He has never stopped experimenting, learning, and trying. He has tried numerous plants as a source for the black pigment, and he has tried numerous clays for the cream slip. Some work, some don't, but he never tires of trying.

Artist Signature - Robert Tenorio, Santo Domingo Pueblo PotterRobert has been a student of pueblo pottery for a number of years, studying professionally at the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) and on his own. He has studied styles, clays, slips, designs and forms. He has mastered the techniques of producing functional, usable pottery for his own use and the use of other members of the pueblo.


Condition: This is a remarkable jar in excellent condition.

Provenance: this Robert Tenorio Version of a Santo Domingo Pueblo Aguilar Style Pottery Jar is from the estate of a family from California

Recommended Reading: A RIVER APART, The Pottery of Cochiti & Santo Domingo Pueblos Valerie Verzuh, et al.

Relative Links: Southwest Indian PotteryKewa - Santo Domingo PuebloContemporary Pottery, Robert Tenario


Robert Tenorio, Kewa Pueblo Potter
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Origin: Kewa - Santo Domingo Pueblo
  • Medium: clay, pigment
  • Size: 7” height x 8” diameter
  • Item # C4247
  • Price: $1,650.00

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