Garcia, Tammy – Jar with Thunderbirds and Flowers

5.25"w x 5"h

$ 7,000.00

This is an impressive jar by Tammy Garcia.  The jar is carved on numerous levels with contrasting polished and matte surfaces.  The jar has two large thunderbirds carved into the clay.  Each bird is inspired in form by the Fred Harvey jewelry thunderbirds.  The central rectangular section is one that Tammy has carved to look like a stone, giving her work a “jeweled” appearance.  On the sides are sections with large floral motifs.  They are polished in two different colors of clay slip. They are surrounded by a stippled (textured) surface.  Tammy says, “The stippling (little dots) on my pottery takes patience.  It’s time-consuming and technical to make one dot at a time.  I can spend several days just stippling a single pot.”  The piece is signed onthe bottom in the clay.  Tammy has won numerous awards for her pottery and been the recipient of the New Mexico Governor’s award.  It’s not surprising that with the intricate nature of her pottery she makes only about ten pieces of pottery a year.  Yet each piece is unique and expands on her distinctive style and voice in the clay.  Tammy says of her new evolving art in clay:

What is new about your current pottery?  “About 10 years ago I began Incorporating stones in my work.    Today, instead of adding stones, I’ve used the clay as the gem itself!   Now a “stone” in my pottery is really just an area of highly polished clay.  The central section in a carved thunderbird may look like a large stone, or small polished squares resemble heishi beads around the neck of the jar.  I can polish the red clay to represent coral or burnish an area and fire it black to represent a jet or onyx.”

“My love for jewelry also reveals itself in the clay.  I want to make each piece I make precious, jewel-like. My new “pillow effect” is really tapering.  It’s achieved in the carving process.  I do it so that the area surrounding the carved designs is higher and the edges are recessed.  It makes the carving more delicate but also less fragile.   I love detail.  When I’m carving a piece the smaller the carved line the more fragile.  Each layer is a fragile, delicate balance of one design on top of another. I want to be able to get more detail and create the optical illusion of even more layers from a distance.  I’ve been working to create even more detail in my work than ever before. “