Kewa Polychrome Jar with Birds

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Potter Once Known
  • Category: Modern
  • Origin: KEWA, Santo Domingo Pueblo
  • Medium: clay, pigments
  • Size: 10” height x 8” diameter
  • Item # C4778D
  • Price: $1500

At one of the largest and most well-known pueblos in New Mexico, early twentieth-century Santo Domingo potters consistently produces traditional, high-quality pottery consisting of time-honored ancestral patterns and design elements. This stunning polychrome jar was made with incredibly careful attention to detail. Although now known as Kewa Pueblo, the polychrome wares are classified as Santo Domingo Polychrome.

Featuring a classic beige slip, very distinctive of Santo Domingo Polychrome pottery, this jar contains beautifully painted birds and flowers all along the body. Artists from there often paint birds like this one on their pottery, and the birds depicted on this jar are an outstanding example of the talent they possess. The two birds have long orange and black feathers, each containing deftly painted lines and dots near their tails.

The flowers featured beside the birds are very visually appealing. They have three leaves on the base sprouting into phenomenal orange and black petals. The birds are seen interacting with the flowers. Underneath these flowers are two black lines going around the jar. Each contains a ceremonial line break. On top of the jar is a flared rim.

The bottom of the jar is unsigned.

Kewa (formerly Santo Domingo Pueblo) is one of the best-known tribes of the Southwest Indians, largely because of the skill demonstrated in marketing their crafts. Kewa Pueblo is one of the largest of the nineteen New Mexico Pueblos, and is generally considered the most conservative in terms of customs and culture. The pottery of this pueblo is strictly traditional, reproducing with care the ancient forms and decorations.


Condition: Very good condition

Provenance: this Kewa Polychrome Jar with Birds is from a private collection

Recommended Reading:

- THE POTTERY OF SANTO DOMINGO PUEBLO: A Detailed Study of its Decoration by Kenneth Milton Chapman (1875-1968)

- A RIVER APART, The Pottery of Cochiti & Santo Domingo Pueblos by Valerie Verzuh, et al.

TAGS: Southwest Indian PotteryKewa - Santo Domingo PuebloContemporary PotteryCeremonial breaks

Potter Once Known
  • Category: Modern
  • Origin: KEWA, Santo Domingo Pueblo
  • Medium: clay, pigments
  • Size: 10” height x 8” diameter
  • Item # C4778D
  • Price: $1500

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