Art History

The Spirit Of Pueblo Pottery” with more than 100 works on July 31st | Pro Club Bd

crib c. 1982. Courtesy/Mary Elizabeth Toya, Jemez Pueblo

Ako polychrome jug, ca. 1760. Courtesy/Museum of Indian Arts and Culture

MIAC News:

SANTA FE – Museum of Indian Arts & Culture (MIAC) will host a traveling exhibition of more than 100 historical and contemporary clay works on July 31st.

The project, Grounded in Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery is a one-of-a-kind exhibit curated by the Native American communities it represents. Organized by the School for Advanced Research (SAR) and the Vilcek Foundation, the exhibition offers a visionary understanding of Pueblo pots as containers of community-based knowledge and personal experience.

The exhibition debuts July 31 at the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture in Santa Fe and moves to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Vilcek Foundation in New York (2023), the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston (2024) and the Saint Louis Art Museum (2025).

More than 60 members from 21 tribal communities known as the Pueblo Pottery Collective (including the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico, the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo of West Texas, and the Hopi Tribe of Arizona) have artistically distinctive pots from the collections of the SAR Native Americans selected and written about by the Arts Research Center in Santa Fe and the Vilcek Foundation in New York.

“Grounded in Clay is like no other Native American art exhibition,” said Antonio Chavarria, curator of ethnology at the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture. “The stunning array of pottery are vessels for stories of Puebloan life, filled with memories of the departed and hopes for the future. It is filled with real heart and authenticity that gives the visitor a rarely seen glimpse into Pueblo art and culture.”

This innovative exhibit commemorates the 100th anniversary of SAR’s Pueblo Pottery Fund pottery collection and the 90th anniversary of the completion of the Laboratory of Anthropology (LAB). The shared history of collections and personalities between SAR and MIAC can now expand into a new century of collaboration. During the presentation of this exhibit in Santa Fe, the MIAC/LAB will also display 11 ceramic pieces to enhance the exhibit, which will include examples from the pueblos of present-day New Mexico. In addition, MIAC’s contribution to the exhibit totaling $51,000 represents total proceeds from sales at the 2021 Native Treasures Art Market.

“The School for Advanced Research and its Indian Arts Research Center is proud to honor the power of Pueblo pottery with this exhibit,” said SAR President Michael F. Brown. “The lovingly crafted vessels at Grounded in Clay, of course, celebrate the Pueblo aesthetic, but equally important are the stories they evoke about a people’s distinctive values ​​and enduring commitment to tradition.”

“Pottery permeates the lives of Pueblo peoples,” added Elysia Poon, director of the Indian Arts Research Center. “For many it is impossible to separate the pieces from the people.”

The exhibition challenges stereotypes about indigenous people and redefines concepts of indigenous art, history and beauty through a unique indigenous group narrative. Grounded in Clay illuminates the art of pottery, but also focuses on prose, poetry and the visual language of pottery, through which the curators amplify the meaning of people and places.

The curator of the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture, Tony Chavarria, writes of a ca. 1900 stone-polished blackware Olla from his native pueblo Kha’p’o Owingeh/Santa Clara, the shape of which evokes memories of his grandmother’s favorite vintage dress: ” I see the flared collar and high neckline in this glass. I see my grandma in the beauty of the earth.”

Referring to her aunt’s crib (ca. 1982), curator and artist Kathleen Wall (Walatowa/Jemez) said: “Although Pueblo religion and culture has a long history of concessions and acceptance to placate the Catholic religion, this has transformed over the centuries a beautiful syncretism and celebration of faith for the Pueblo people of New Mexico.”

About the Museum of Indian Art and Culture

That Museum of Indian Arts and Cultureis a department ofDepartment of Cultural Affairs, under the direction of the Board of Regents for the Museum of New Mexico. Programs and exhibits are generously supported by the Museum of New Mexico Foundation and our donors. The mission of the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture/Laboratory of Anthropology is to serve as a center for the administration, knowledge, and understanding of the artistic, cultural, and intellectual achievements of the diverse peoples of the Native Southwest.

About the School for Advanced Research

The School for Advanced Research, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit educational organization, was founded in 1907 to advance innovative social sciences and Native American arts. His 15-acre residential campus is located on Tewa ancestral land in O’gah’poh go Owingeh, or Santa Fe, New Mexico.

About the Vilcek Foundation

The Vilcek Foundation is a private foundation, an IRS Section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness of the contributions of immigrants to the United States and promoting appreciation of the arts and science. The foundation was established in 2000 by Jan and Marica Vilcek, immigrants from the former Czechoslovakia.

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