Leno, Juana – Water Jar with Rain Cloud and Lightning Band (1960’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 a classic Acoma water jar shape with a wide shoulder and short neck. The jar has a lightning band around the neck. The body of the jar has four sections, each with a complex pattern. Juana seems in her stride when she is creating such complicated designs. There are clouds, rain, plants, and lightning designs. Her use of negatives pace with the contrasting fine-line patterns is part of what makes the designs flow and the eye move across the surface. The jar was traditionally fired and it is very thin-walled. It is signed on the bottom, “Mrs. Juana Leno”. It is in excellent condition and a creative piece of pottery by this important Acoma Pueblo potter!