Leno, Juana – Clay Female Figure (1970’s)
Juana Leno is one of the four revivalist matriarchs of contemporary Acoma pottery (including Marie Z. Chino, Lucy Lewis, and Jessie Garcia). She was a daughter of Lupita and Jose Vallo and learned to make pottery from her grandmother Eulilia Vallo. This is an exceptional figurative piece of her pottery. There is a history of Acoma figurative work in this style, especially with the painted cheeks. This figure is coil built and the arms are painted onto the body. The “skirt” is a classic lighting and rain design. The face and hair are also painted with bee-weed. The figure was traditionally fired, which gives it the coloration on the surface. After the firing, she added the turquoise earrings. The piece is signed on the bottom, “J. Leno”. It is in very good condition and a creative piece of pottery by this important Acoma Pueblo potter!