Medicine Flower, Grace – Large Basket Weave Bowl with Deer & Eagle Medallions (1992)
Grace Medicine Flower remains renown for her innovative and creative pottery. This is one of her dynamic “basket weave” pieces. She only made the basket-weave pieces for a few years before moving on to the polychrome pottery. The concept behind these pieces was for them to appear as if the clay had fallen away and there was a woven basket underneath. The basket areas are carved vertically, incised horizontally and then painted with a clay slip. This bowl is one of her earliest styles of basket weave where she polished the basket area tan. The lines were then incised after the polishing. She made very few of these and later evolved it with matte rows for the basket coils. Surrounding the basketry areas the bowl is fully slipped with mica. There are two large medallions which are polished with a tan band and red in the center. One has an etched eagle and the other a deer. There are additional Mimbres style antelope etched into the sides and interior of the bowl. Note how the rim of the bowl is carved with Kiva Step ad mountain forms, which give the bowl a dynamic appearance. When looking from various angles into the bowl she has used the antelope designs almost as if they were petroglyphs on canyon walls! There is so much going on in this bowl in terms of shape, color, design, and complexity! Grace is one of the few potters who has thought out so much of the multi-dimensionality of her clay art and each piece reflects that thoughtfulness. The bowl is signed on the bottom in the clay, “Grace Medicine Flower”. It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair.