Artist Media Series
This is a coil-built melon bowl by Samuel Manymules. It has a round, full shape. There are eleven swirling melon ribs encircling the jar and extending from the rim to the base. Samuel is one of the few potters to make a classic melon bowl with the ribs pushed out from the inside. You can actually feel each rib and it is amazing they are so symmetric in shape! However, it is not just the swirl of the ribs, but the firing that is so dramatic. The piece was traditionally fired to create the blushes from black to deep red. The browner areas are where it was fired to a higher temperature. After the firing, the jar is covered with pinon pitch in the traditional way expected of Navajo pottery. The jar is signed on the bottom, “SM”. It is extraordinary vessels like this that keep Samuel among the top Navajo potters working today.