Pueblo: Santa Clara Pueblo

Denise ChavarriaDenise Chavarria, from the Pueblo of Santa Clara-Tewa, began working with clay at the age of sixteen. She was inspired by her mother, Stella Chavarria, and her grandmother, Teresita Naranjo, to continue the long lived family tradition of making pottery using ancient traditional methods. Stella taught Denise the fundamentals of working with clay and encouraged her to continue the family tradition and add to the legacy. Denise specializes in hand coiling traditional black on black Santa Clara pottery incorporating many of her grandmother’s designs into her pottery. She also works with carved redware.

She is a full time potter and is teaching her three children to pot. She signs her pottery as: Denise Chavarria, Santa Clara Pueblo.

She just gets better and better every year and is definitely worth collecting and still very reasonably priced. Denise has exhibited and won awards since the early 1990s at the Santa Fe Indian Market, Eight Northern Pueblos Arts & Crafts Show, and the New Mexico State Fair. Her work is included in Dillingham’s “Fourteen Families in Pueblo Pottery”, Schaaf’s “Pueblo Indian Pottery 750 Artist Biographies”, and “Southwestern Pottery: Anasazi to Zuni” by Hayes and Blom.