Archuleta, Mary Ester – Red Incised Jar wtih Kiva Step Rim (1970’s)
This is a long neck kiva rim jar by Mary Ester Archuleta. The jar is fully polished red and incised around the center in a San Juan Pueblo style. It was this style which Mary helped to revive in the 1970s when she married into San Juan Pueblo. The center band is matte and incised with cloud, corn, prayer feather, and lightning patterns. There is just a bit of mica used in the background areas. Similar cloud and corn designs are also on the neck of the jar. The rim of the jar is carved into a “kiva step” pattern. This is a traditional form in Santa Clara pottery and the holes are where eagle feathers would be attached. The jar has a striking contrast between the matte and polished surfaces. It is signed on the bottom in the clay, “Mary E. Archuleta. It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair. Mary is the second youngest daughter of Margaret Tafoya. She married into San Juan Pueblo in the late 1960’s and created most of her pieces in the San Juan inspired style. It was her marriage at San Juan and reviving pottery there, which reminded Margaret about how she learned to polish the tan slip when her brother had married and moved there years earlier.