Margaret Tafoya (Kah'p'oo Owinge (Santa Clara Pueblo), 1904–2001). <em>Water Jar</em>, ca. 1970. Ceramic, slip, 16 3/8 x 13 in. or (41.6 x 33.0 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of The Roebling Society, 87.61. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 87.61_PS20.jpg)

Water Jar

Artist:Margaret Tafoya

Medium: Ceramic, slip

Geograhical Locations:

Dates:ca. 1970

Dimensions: 16 3/8 x 13 in. or (41.6 x 33.0 cm)



Accession Number: 87.61

Image: 87.61_PS20.jpg,

Catalogue Description:
Tapered water jar with a highly polished black surface. The bear paw imprint is first impressed then carved into neck of jar. The design relates to a Santa Clara legend where at a time of drought, a bear led the people to where there was water. The bear paw is placed upright as if in prayer asking for rain and everlasting life for the Santa Clara people. The bands around the jar are called rainbow bands and each band is considered a prayer to keep the water from evaporating. Tafoya felt that both the bear paw and rainbow bands were from the ancestors and belonged to her pueblo.

Brooklyn Museum