Herrera, Laurencita – Storyteller with Cochiti Bowl (1950s)
Laurencita Herrera (1912-1984) is the matriarch of a family of renowned potters. Her daughters include Seferina Ortiz and Mary Francis Herrera. Her grandchildren include Virgil Ortiz and his sisters, Janice, Inez, and Joyce Ortiz. She created an amazing legacy at Cochiti that continues to this day. This is one of her classic storyteller figures that she began making in 1952. Her style is easily identifiable with the long, thin arms, the way the eyes are painted, and how she shaped the face with the clay. The figure is holding a traditional Cochiti bowl with a rain cloud and spirit line. The figure is painted with white Cochiti clay, wild spinach (black) and red clay. It was traditionally fired. While it is unsigned, it is easily attributable as her work, and much of her early pottery was unsigned as she did not begin signing her work until the late 1960s, and even then it was usually done in pencil post-firing. It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration, or repair. Definitely a classic by this historically important potter!