Helen was active from the 1950s through the early 1980s. She enjoyed creating large storage jars, among many other forms. This very large olla is a wonderful and rare example of her marvelous work.
This is a very large and beautiful polychrome storage jar (red and black on white slip). It has a red slipped interior with double framing lines above and below mid-body designs. Helen has decorated the jar with traditional Zia symbols of plant and flower motifs encircled in swirls and geometric designs, along with most unusual and distinctive bird faces within a circle.
This sturdy olla has basalt as a tempering agent and was formed in traditional coil method, painted with all-natural materials and fired in an outdoor kiln. This jar is traditional in every aspect of its creation
Zia Pueblo pottery is among the sturdiest of the pueblo pottery, since it contains ground up basalt or lava as a tempering agent. Zia ollas are most prized as water jars. The jars are porous enough to allow water to seep through the wall of a jar sufficiently for evaporation and cooling of the water, yet the jar is strong enough to withstand the moisture.
Condition: Very good – original condition – some minor pitting as is usual with Zia most pottery. There is a small paint drip along the rim.
Provenance: Acquired from a gentleman in Arizona