Pueblo: Zuni Pueblo

Erma Kalestewa Homer is the daughter of Zuni potter Juanita Kalestewa and the granddaughter of Nellie Bica, both master potters at Zuni.  Although she is an excellent potter of traditional shapes and forms, Erma is most well known for her effigy Zuni owls– the Zuni version of a storyteller.

In the 1960’s, Erma Homer began a long and productive pottery making career. During this time, Erma learned to make a variety of styles of traditional Zuni pottery. The family forms their pottery in a trailer behind their house from clay collected at Nutria Mesa.  The Kalestewa family continues to fire their pots traditionally with sheep manure outdoors.

Legend says that owls can see what others cannot and this is a large part of Owl (Muhukwi) medicine. An owl’s ability to do this reminds us of the importance of both worlds: the physical, as well as the spiritual, perhaps the known and the unknown.

Adapted from information from Perry Null Trading Post and Keshi: the Zuni connection.