Oh so strange, unusual, and wonderful; I hesitate to say beautiful because this jar’s wonder is its very eccentricity. In the neck area polychrome field against white slip are a series designs: maybe mountains, raindrops, kiva steps, katsina faces?? You tell me! In the lower red field, the white designs again maybe are mountains, kiva steps etc. Of course our eye is drawn to the raised scalloped band between the 2 fields. It is marked with a narrow black line on the raised area and highlighted above by black and red repeating mountains(?). All are drawn with a slight crudeness; a lack of the pristine painting that we normally associate with fine Zuni pottery. Yet on these red on white ceramics which appeared from 1890 to about 1910 according to Lanmon and Harlow (see chapter 19 in their seminal work: The Pottery of Zuni Pueblo which is available at our gallery.). rather crude painting predominates. Was it one family pottery producing these wares? Were they trying to make the pottery look primitive for the newly emerging tourist trade? In all the examples illustrated in chapter 19, only 2 (figures 19.11 and 19.12 have a raised band, but not one like this. All of which makes it a fascinating and collectible and rare example.
Condition is very good, with a minor and unrestored vertical crack.