Pueblo: San Ildefonzo Pueblo

Barbara GonzalesBarbara Gonzales, Tahn Moo Whe, from San Ildefonso Pueblo is an excellent potter and an extension of her famous great-grandmother, Maria Martinez, and her grandparents, Adam and Santana Martinez. Her mother, Anita Martinez, was also a potter. Drawing on the traditions of her family, she expanded this tradition by personalizing her pottery she describes as “slipped-designed polychrome” with inlaid coral and turquoise on etched black and sienna wares, often inlaid on spider designs which she created in 1973.

“Barbara calls herself a clay artist rather than simply a potter.  She has said, ‘As an artist, if you let yourself go, you will find yourself doing different things’ and, ‘Whenever an Indian gets involved with art, they do it with their whole being—that’s what makes the art unique.’  She has created some unique forms and styles, such as the spider and spider webbing technique in sgraffito that has become her trademark.  She says the use of the spider on her pots symbolizes good luck.”

Reference:  The Legacy of Maria Poveka Martinez.