The Pottery of the Acoma
Although Acoma Pueblo is a spread of villages-Acomita, McCartys, Anzac, San Fidel, and Seama, every visitor is drawn to the Sky City, the old pueblo, so inaccessible that it discouraged the greedy Coronado from attempting its capture. Since the eighteenth century Acoma potters have made thin- walled, large ollas, slipped in pure white and decorated in red and black. In 1880 the railroad brought tourists whose small suitcases made the creation of eccentric little pieces an economic necessity. Lucy Lewis became the most famous Acoma potter, and next to Maria Martinez of San Ildefonso, possibly the best-known of all Southwestern potters. The equally talented and productive Marie Zieu Chino seems to have been largely ignored by writers, editors, and publishers even though both Lucy and Marie had lengthy careers, had famous potter children, and both influenced the pottery of their pueblo for years. Unfortunately for both families, none of the grandchildren have managed to achieve any celebrity as potters.