Sanchez, Russell – Avanyu Handle Jar with Lid
Russell Sanchez has found inspiration in the signed historic San Ildefonso pottery for both shapes and designs on his pottery. This unique jar is inspired by a bowl by his great-great-grandmother, Ramona Sanchez Gonzales. In the last photo, the red bowl by Ramona can be seen, with the avanyu in relief on the side. As well, Tony Da made a jar with lizard handles in 1967-8, which is now in the Philbrook Museum (#7095). The black and sienna of the jar and the etched medallions are certainly a reference for Russell’s latest piece. This jar has sienna medallions on each side. They are etched with traditional San Ildefonso birds. Each medallion is surrounded by two bands of hei-shi beads. The handles are in the shape of the avanyu, much as on Ramona’s bowl. The neck of the jar has a cloud pattern and the remainder of the piece is a micaceous clay slip. The lid is fired to a near gunmetal appearance and has a sienna top and a single inset piece of turquoise. The bottom of the jar has a “foot” which is reminiscent of historic San Ildefonso pottery and it is also indented. The hei-shi beads are all made by the Calabaza family from Santo Domingo Pueblo. The jar seamlessly blends the old with the new and creates a new vision of how potters can derive inspiration from the past while creating their own new vessels.