Gutierrez, Lois – Polychrome Water Jar with Basket Dancers (2021)
This is a traditional complex polychrome water jar by Lois Gutierrez. She is one of the few potters who continues to create polychrome pottery at Santa Clara. Polychrome, or more than three different colors of clay slips, are all painted onto the surface of the vessel before it is fired. This is a water jar shape with a round shoulder and an elongated neck. The jar depicts the Basket Dance at Santa Clara Pueblo. There are six figures on the jar, alternating male and female. They are each detailed in their painted designs from the basket to the kilts. There is a large basket painted on one section of the jar with a turtle in the center. What is the most amazing on the jar is the base which Lois painted in the design of a basket! It is time-consuming and precision-oriented to create the optical illusion of a basket on the bottom of the jar …in clay! But, it is creative and striking in person. There are SIX different colors of clay on this jar. Did you know that Lois collects each of the different clays from around Santa Clara Pueblo in order to create these colorations? The jar was traditionally fired. It is signed on the bottom, “Lois 2021”. It is always exciting to have her new work in the gallery!