Growing up in New Mexico, I had the Rio Grande in my backyard, and the mountains were close. There was a place in Santa Clara Pueblo where my grandmother would take us to gather clay from the hillsides. I learned to make traditional Pueblo pottery in which stories are told through design and meaning is conveyed through shape; there is a sense of oneness.
In the West, bronze won the hearts of many artists. The richness of the patina can inspire a passion for color. I was drawn to the metal because of its strength. <line break>My great-great-grandmother, Serafina, would scallop the rims of her water jars; she said that symbolized raindrops. I thought of her while making this piece. Three bears are set between water serpents, and the eagle feathers are carved into the clay. Each design tells a story about Pueblo life.