Namingha, Les – “Zuni Modernism” Large Jar
This is a creative Zuni inspired jar by Les Namingha. He learned to make pottery from his aunt, Dextra Quotskuyva and is known for his innovative forms and designs. Les is both Zuni and Hopi-Tewa. I always like to see when it draws from his Zuni heritage for his pottery to create modernist works. This large jar is a classic Zuni shape with a high shoulder and a short neck. The neck is painted with the classic rainbird designs. The top of the shoulder has alternating cloud designs. Below the shoulder is a series of highly-detailed mountain patterns. Within/below the mountains are the blue rivers with the falling rain. The coloration is as much a part of the jars meaning as the designs themselves! Add to that a striking flow of design that accentuates the form. The imagery all comes from traditional Zuni pottery, yet with a re-interpretation through contemporary eyes. It’s all the little details which make this jar so special. Definitely interesting to see how he takes classic imagery and modernizes it in his style and grows with each piece. The jar is signed on the bottom in the clay, “Les Namingha” 2019.