José Desiderio (J.D.) Roybal [1922-1978] Oquwa - Rain God

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J. D. Roybal signatureJosé Desiderio (J.D.) Roybal, whose Tewa name was Oquwa (Rain God), was a well-known painter from San Ildefonso Pueblo. He was born on November 7, 1922 at San Ildefonso, the son of Tonita and Juan Cruz Roybal. He passed away June 28, 1978. He was a nephew of Alfonso Roybal (Awa Tsireh).

He did a bit of painting in the 1930s but was not very productive until the 1950s. He was most productive in the 1960-1970 decade. His most popular subject matter was his rendition of the Tewa Clowns known as Koshare or Koosa. Often he presented them in a jovial manner.

He used water-based paints throughout his career. His excellent detail in small paintings never went unnoticed. In his work there prevails fine color, excellent detail, small and fine outlines, gesturing figures, and a pleasing combination of heavy conventional themes with realistic subjects.

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