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Youngblood, Nathan – “Deer Tracks and Rain Clouds” Red Jar

Youngblood, Nathan – “Deer Tracks and Rain Clouds” Red Jar

7.5"w x 4"h
$ 5,800.00
Availability: Out of stock

This is a deeply carved and highly polished red jar by Nathan Youngblood.  He is well known for his carved pottery and use of both traditional Santa Clara and other designs. This jar has a wide shoulder and a sloping neck.  The area around the center is fully carved with design.  Nathan says of the design,

“The jar has three different cloud designs.  One is the clouds just circling in the sky.  The next are the clouds building up to get ready to rain. The third group has the clouds and the rain coming down.  Right where the rain is coming down is where I etched the deer tracks.  The deer have come out to enjoy a spring rain.”

The jar is very fully carved and each of the sections of design builds up in concept as the jar is turned.  The four deer tracks etched into the clay are near the base of the jar.    The red clay slip is deep and rich in coloration and the jar was traditionally fired. The shape shows off the imagery and the angle of the short neck beautifully reflects the light.  While the shape, carving, and designing might seem like enough, Nathan also takes his pottery one step further. After it is fired, he uses small screwdrivers and scrapes the sides of the carved designs and the recessed areas, to create a visually striking contrast.  It is signed on the bottom in the clay with his name and deer tracks, which represent his name in Tewa.


Out of stock


Artist

Artist

Youngblood, Nathan (b. 1954)

Nathan Youngblood

Nathan Youngblood

nathan youngblood

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A grandson of noted potter Margaret Tafoya and the son of Mela Youngblood, Nathan Youngblood has a traditonal legacy of highly polished deep carved pottery.  In 1976 he moved in with his grandparents and began an intense apprenticeship making pottery under their guidance.  Attention to the small details was also imparted to him by his mother and grandmother. The precision of his work is particularly evident in his forms, which have near geometric perfection in shape and symmetry.  Nathan says, “I realize I don’t make pots, I’m just involved in the process. The clay does what it wants to do, goes where it wants to go.  I stick my hands in the clay and where it goes, I follow.”

Nathan’s clay art has evolved dramatically throughout his career.  His early work focused on classic Santa Clara shapes and designs. In the early 1990s, Nathan re-examined his experiences with art from around the world and how it could be incorporated as part of his designs.  His love of Asian ceramics influenced how he designed his pottery and how he utilized matte and polished surfaces to emphasize form.  The designs seemed to be more complicated, less linear, and more ethereal in concept.  He “opened the door for other potters to use clay as a vehicle for their personal and cultural experiences.”

Over the years Nathan has won over 140 awards for his pottery. He is one of only a handful of Santa Clara potters who use natural clay slips to create color contrasts of red and tan in his pottery.  This combination of polished red and tan sections with matte or micaceous surfaces has become the new Santa Clara “polychrome.”  Throughout his career, he has continually built on the lessons learned from his mother and grandmother. This legacy has created a solid foundation for the evolution of his pottery and “he has set the bar high for any potter to balance creativity, innovation, and technical expertise.”

Click Here to see more works by Nathan Youngblood.

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An Interview with Nathan   Learn More about Pottery Making

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