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Santa Clara Wedding Vase w/Melon Ridge, attributed to Margaret or Tomacita Tafoya, c. 1920′s

This is a large and gorgeous Santa Clara double spouted (“wedding”) vase with a pedestal base. This wedding vase form would become common in the art market in the century to come, but was rarer in the early 20th century.

This vase has striking similarity to the one illustrated on page 47 of Charles King’s book Born of Fire, The Life and Pottery of Margaret Tafoya. Margaret identified that jar as one of hers from the early 1920′s. Margaret’s sister, Charles King notes, was also known for this form.

There is so much to cherish in this example: the pedestal still used at this time, but soon to disappear in Tewa pottery; beautiful, skillful, symmetrical and elegant construction, another incompletely smothered jar during firing leaving golden mid-body coloration.

More contemporary wedding vessels are not my favorite form; a personal opinion and bias, of no more importance than that.  I  generally find them to lack warmth.  Not this old beauty; the simple naive finger impressions; the early pedestal design; the wide mid-body; and perhaps mostly the firing process, particularly lack of enough (generally) horse manure to smother the fire completely and to turn the pot entirely black,  has resulted in golden tones glowing out from much of the jar’s surface.  While these sound like technical details, the all the cumulative effect is a warm, collectible and desirable early example of this form.

Condition is excellent.

A wonderful early example.

Additional information

circa

pueblo