Martinez, Maria – Gunmetal Plate with Spiraling Plant Design (1920s)
WOW! This is a striking gunmetal fired early plate by Maria Martinez. Maria would make the pottery and her husband, Julian Martinez, would paint the design. The plate is an early one from around 1924-5. It is fired to a silvery gunmetal coloration. What is so strong and unusual is the design! The plate has a spiraling plant design that has a square in the center and then the petals spiral out, like a columbine! I think it is actually a datura plant with the spirals and that plant, which is native to the Southwest, was also often used in Mimbres pottery from the 1100s. The tips of the petals just touch near the rim of the plate and then turn into small cloud patterns. It is always exciting to come across a piece that has a very unique design, as well as coloration, and exceptional condition. The plate is signed on the back, near the rim, “Marie”. The pieces were signed before they were fired. The gunmetal coloration of the surface was due to more intense heat in the firing. The plate is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration, or repair. This is definitely one of those exciting pieces by Maria & Julian Martinez which rarely come around to the marketplace!
Maria Martinez Signatures