Lonewolf, Joseph – Red & Black Bowl with Lizard (1972)
Joseph Lonewolf began making pottery in 1970-1. This is a classic piece of his pottery in the black and red style. It is a true miniature and a very early piece from 1972. The entire piece is fully polished and the central medallion is a Mimbres style lizard. Joseph was fascinated with Mimbres from the 1100’s, as was Tony Da from San Ildefonso. Joseph once said of the Mimbres pottery:
“I regard the Mimbres as my ancestors. Though I refine their designs, each design must have meaning for me. In my dreams, I see how to use the design, how to make the pot happen. Then when I work the clay, everything flows. Some people wonder why I keep changing styles, colors, forms. But I can’t just sit there and make pots. Like any artist, I must try different things, different techniques. I must meet the challenge with my hands. The patterns and the methods I see in my mind during my dreams.” —Jospeh Lonewolf (1974), Spoken Through Clay
Thie bowl is one of Josephs’s great innovations in Pueblo pottery. He created the “red and black” coloration. At the end of the firing process before the manure was added to turn the piece black. The bowl is polished, incised and etched before it is fired. Note as well the matte area which has been etched away and the lines which either swirl or extend vertically to emphasize the polished areas. This piece is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair. It is signed on the bottom in the clay, “Joseph Lonewolf”.