Sanchez, Russell – Red and Black Double Sided Mountain Lion and Bear Canteen

7"w x 7"h

$ 6,200.00

It is not often that Russell Sanchez makes a canteen.  They are a traditional form which Russell creates as fine art in clay. This piece has a medallion on each side.  One medallion has an incised mountain lion and the other a bear.  What is difficult to see in the photos is that each of the animals is etched with a hatchwork pattern and then painted with a red and black clay slip.  Russell said that this was how fetishes were often painted at the Pueblo. The result is that each animal has a visual coloration but also a wonderful textural feel. There is also a single inset piece of turquoise in the center of each animal.   The area surrounding them is polished black and then a band of copper-colored mica.  In the micaceous band there are 40 inset pieces of jet on each side!  There are also two bands of jet hei-shi beads.  This traditional stone accents the traditional designs on this piece.  The remainder of the canteen is polished a deep red. The deep red color is a revival by Russell as it is the same red clay slip which was used at San Ildefonso in the 1920’s and 30’s.  The shape is powerful with a slight curve to the neck and note the rounded bottom of the canteen.  It has 16 melon ribs carved into the piece!  So where is it signed? Russell signed it inside the mouth of the canteen!  The canteen has a metal museum mount which stands it securely upright but also allows you to see both sides. Once again Russell harkens to historic San Idlefonso designs and stories and uses them for his own contemporary work.

Click here to read: Russell Sanchez: Contemporizing the Pueblo Pottery Past

Out of stock