de la Cruz, Juan and Lois Gutierrez – Jar with Pueblo Woman and Hummingbirds
7"w x 8.5"h
This is the second painted jar by Juan Cruz. He is a son of noted potter Lois Gutierrez. Lois made the jar and Juan, who is noted for his illustrations, painted the design using natural clays. The jar is a classic water jar with a low shoulder. Juan wrote a description of the jar as follows,
This piece depicts a woman calling forth the monsoon storms, bearing her prayer feather bundle in her right hand and carrying a ceremonial water vessel in her left. The cloud motif above the prayer feather bundle represnets the storms that are coming to bring rain to the budding flowers and vegetation that the first hummingbird is extracting nectar from. The second hummingbird connects with the woman through the rainbow that spans out from its colorful tail feathers, a second represnation of the rain that comes with the monsoon storms.
The jar is truly polychrome (more than three colors of clay). Note the intricacy of the painted designs int he dress, bracelet and wings of the hummingbirds. There is simply a striking flow of design as the jar is turned and captures the sophistication of Juan’s painting style. The jar has been traditionally fired outdoor and overall is a striking coloration. It is signed on the indented bottom of the jar by both Juan and Lois.