Martha Romero Nambe Black Micaceous Bowl

Item No: 11490

$ 975.00

  • This large, beautifully functional, handmade serving bowl was created from micaceous clay by Martha Romero of Nambé Pueblo.

    Martha created this traditional bowl using all-natural materials gathered within her pueblo. The vessel features a distinctive black finish, which comes from a reduction process that occurs when a pot is smothered during firing. The dark finish is speckled with natural mica that shines through like stars in the night sky.
    • Handmade traditional outdoor-fired bowl by Martha Romero of Nambé Pueblo
    • Natural micaceous clay
    • Crafted by hand through traditional horizontal coil method
    • Natural black finish from reduction process
    • Bowl measures L: 11-1/2 W: 11-1/4 H: 5-½
    • Comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity

    Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care. For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.

  • Martha Romero is a member of the Pueblo of Nambé, and her Indian name is Kwahtenbay (Rainbow). She was influenced by her mother, Rose Alice Baca, in her culture and artistic path. Martha has studied under pottery instructors Clarence Cruz, Pamela Lujan-Hauer, and Michael Bancroft. She has shown her work at SWAIA Santa Fe Indian Market and the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market.

    Martha not only educates a wide variety of people on the history of micaceous clay pottery and how to use it for cooking today, but also passes the knowledge and methods on to Pueblo youth so that they may continue the craft and traditions of their heritage. She is also one of Shumakolowa’s select Pueblo Pottery Mugs artists, which you can read more about here.

  • Nambé Pueblo was historically known for making elegant pottery and valuable cookware, but today it is extremely difficult to find handcrafted pottery from Nambé.

    For hundreds of years, the Nambé people made cooking pots from micaceous clay, as well as plain blackware, for utilitarian purposes, but traditional pottery-making declined in the 20th century. When the Native arts market boomed in the 1970s, a handful of artists began producing micaceous clay and polychrome pottery again, as well as polished blackware influenced by Santa Clara styles.

    Despite the demand, pottery production in Nambé Pueblo remains extremely limited.

  • The most celebrated and recognized art form of the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico is pottery. Pueblo pottery is known around the world for its remarkable beauty and craftsmanship. It has been made in much the same way for over a thousand years, with every step of creation completed by hand.

    Pueblo potters do not use a wheel, but construct pots using the traditional horizontal coil method, or freely forming the shape. After the pot is formed, the artist polishes the piece with a natural polishing stone, such as a river stone, then paints it with a vegetal, mineral, or commercial slip. Finally, the pot is fired in an outdoor fire or kiln using manure or wood as fuel.

    Santa Clara, San Ildefonso, Jemez, and Acoma Pueblos have distinctive pottery styles that are especially prized by collectors, but accomplished potters are working in all Pueblos.

    Today, Pueblo pottery is an exciting and dynamic form, with many artists pairing traditional techniques with innovative and stylized designs. Those potters who continue to create pots using traditional methods possess an extraordinary level of skill, and their pots are highly valuable works of fine art that will be enjoyed for generations to come.

    Read our Native American Pottery Collector's Guide.
  • At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we guarantee that your purchase is an original and authentic work handcrafted by Native American artists as defined by the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990. We ask our artists to complete an extensive certification process, providing a CIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood) card and other documentation of their Native American heritage. Our team of experts carefully inspects every product to guarantee it is handcrafted using traditional, sustainable processes, and natural materials of only the highest quality. We record the place and date of each purchase, and pride ourselves in paying a fair price that allows artists to make a living practicing their craft.

    Every work of handcrafted art comes with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by an artist or buyer. At a time when many commercially made products are being sold as handcrafted Native American art, our in-depth purchase process allows us to guarantee the authenticity of every unique piece of fine art we offer. For more than 40 years, we have made it a priority to visit artists in their studio or home to purchase their latest handcrafted pieces and learn about their work. We have developed lasting relationships with artists, as well as dealers and collectors, and we take pride in being a trusted destination for fine Native American art.

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