Lucas, Steve – 14″ Plate with Eight Eagle Tails

14.25" diameter

$ 3,300.00

This is a stunning large plate by Steve Lucas.  He remains one of the leading Hopi-Tewa potters working today.  Each piece is coil built, stone polished, painted with native clay slips and bee-weed (black), and traditionally fired.  Steve has won “Best of Show” at Santa Fe Indian Market and his work remains some of the most refined and creative.  This plate is amazingly thin and painted with bee-weed (black) and red clay slips. There are eight eagle tails extending out from the center of the plate. They are tightly painted and create a kaleidoscope of color and detail.  The contrasting red and black colorations against the native clay surface are striking.  The plate was traditionally fired and even the back is exceptional with the fire clouds across the surface. Steve said of the deep red clay slip he uses on his pottery:

“When I first learned to make pottery, the red slip painted in the designs was difficult to work with. It wouldn’t take heat very well and would scorch and turn black. The red was also difficult to polish. My aunt Dextra had a deep red color clay slip and I decided to experiment with it. I took some of our base clay and added the red to it and it polished very well. I then decided to put some mica in there to get that sparkle. That’s where the new red came from, and Dextra liked how it turned out. I introduced them to that. It was nice that for my teacher, Dextra, I was able to share and teach her something.”  Steve Lucas, Spoken Through Clay

The plate has both an ancient and modern appearance to the design.  It is signed on the bottom in the clay, “S. Lucas” and a mudhead (koyemsi) and an ear of corn (corn clan).  Spectacular!