Art Collection 03

Zia Pueblo Water Jar, circa 1920s. The flower and bird motif featured are typical of the Zia Pueblo in the early 1900s. The Zia Pueblo is located about 35 miles northwest of Albuquerque, New Mexico and the Zia sun symbol is featured on the New Mexico flag.

Old San Ildefonso Pueblo Pot, circa 1880s. From the bill of lading, “A black-on-red type no longer made. It was made in the period preceding high polish specimens, such as we have today. Although in excellent condition, it is about forty years old. A curious detail is the lid, something rarely found in San Ildefonso, which necessitated a flange. This is an excellent example.”

Santa Clara Pueblo Wedding Ceremonial Jar, circa 1920s. Traditionally, the grooms’ family make the wedding vase before the ceremony. The form of the vessel reflects its ceremonial use, each spout represents the separate lives of the bride and groom, united at the top and drawing from the communal base. During the wedding ceremony, the bride drinks from one spout, then passes the vase to the groom who drinks from the other, uniting them as one. Wedding jars are treasured and often passed from one generation to the next.

Hopi Pueblo Jar, circa 1920s. Described as, “shows clearly the heritage of the Hopi from prehistoric Little Colorado.” Pueblo pottery was on the brink of extinction when manufactured metal goods were introduced at the turn of the century. Hopi artist Nampeyo is credited with the revival of Hopi pottery. Her husband, Lesou, helped excavate the Sikyatki village ruins in 1895 and she was inspired by the designs used by her ancestors before the arrival of Spanish explorers.

Santo Domingo Pueblo Pot, circa 1920s with flower design. Santo Domingo pots are distinguished by buff colored clay and dark black designs, with birds and flowers being popular motifs. The clay at Santa Domingo is rather elastic, allowing for large forms like this storage pot.

All of these pieces were included in the lot purchased from the Old Santa Fe Trading Post in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1928 and are on permanent loan from the Oklahoma Historical Society.

Richard Day, Trading Post owner wrote this in the letter accompanying the pieces, “The amount of the charges, one hundred dollars, is, of course, a net price to a museum, and we feel certain that this collection could not be duplicated under one hundred and fifty. Some pieces could not be duplicated at all: i.e. the prehistoric.” Several of the nearly three dozen pots from this purchase are now on display at the Oklahoma Judicial Center.