Lonewolf, Joseph – Red Seedpot with Realistic Cougar (1996)
This is a complex realistic seedpot by Joseph Lonewolf. He began making pottery in 1970-1 and this piece is from 1996. The seedpot is fully polished and fired red. There is a realistic cougar etched into the clay. It is carved at various levels, giving dimension to the eyes, mouth, and nose. In front of the cougar are pine branches. As the piece is turned there is a realistic butterfly and the yearly symbol for 1996, a cross in a heart. The piece is signed on the bottom, “Joseph Lonewolf”. It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration, or repair. I’m not sure my photos do it justice, it is spectacular realism for the size!
It gives me a funny feeling when people tell me I’ve done something brand new and different. I’ve just figured out all over again what potters did centuries ago. But it is NOT new as people like to say it is. Such colors were achieved in pre-history times by my ancestors. 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.” —JOSEPH LONEWOLF, Spoken Through Clay
Deciphered: The Yearly Symbols of Joseph Lonewolf