Huma, Rondina – Bowl with Tumbling Birds and Geometrics (2000)

5"w x 4"h

$ 4,400.00

Rondina Huma has certainly been one of the most influential Hopi potters working today.  Since her two-time “Best of Show” awards at Santa Fe Indian Market, her tight style and intricately painted pottery has changed the face of contemporary Hopi pottery.   Each piece is coil built, fully stone polished and painted with native clays and bee-weed (black), and native fired.  This is a very unusual design for her pottery.  Interestingly, I looked through about 20 years of photos of her work that came through the gallery, and I never had a piece with this type of design.  The bowl is fully polished and fully designed.  The rim has alternating cloud and rain designs with polished burgundy and red clay squares.  The main design on the bowl are four panels with large swirling birds.  Each bird is different and they are amazingly complex in design and imagery.  Each bird has multiple squares with different Hopi-Tewa designs.  Just.  Amazing!  The bowl is from the early 2000s. Rondina said of this style of her pottery:

“This style is when I first started designing from the bottom to the top. I would get a bunch of sherds and I would put them together and see what pattern they created. Then I would take back the sherds to where I found them. I also polish the inside of all my pottery. People ask how I do it and how I can get so deep inside. I just think it makes a bowl look nicer if it is fully polished. The burgundy-colored [areas] are the water migration. It’s like a spring with the water coming up out of the earth and soaking back into the ground. It’s a full cycle, so the square has to be complete. I do most of the painting freehand. When I look at a pot, I already know what design I’m going to put on there. I can visualize what I’m going to paint, and it is never the same. I don’t really use a pencil—I’m afraid it won’t come off. I try to just measure with my hand to space out the designs.”  Rondina Huma, Spoken Through Clay

Over the years, Rondina made pieces with increasingly detailed painting and precision.   Even the inside of the bowl is fully polished.  Rondina would make pieces so she could get her hand inside and polish the interior.  While she no longer makes pottery, her work is iconic in Hopi-Tewa pottery.  The bowl is signed on the bottom, “Rondina Huma”.  It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair.