Exploring the Different Types of Clay Used for Making Clay Art Pieces in Omaha, Nebraska

Jacquie, an Indian potter, was one of the first to roll large, slender pots with the help of Otellie. These pots are simple yet beautiful, with clay surfaces that are scraped and sanded in their natural state without any glazing or burnishing. Jacquie loves subtle changes in color and thus uses many varieties of clays in combination or mixed. He also likes to add other textures such as leather, woven reeds, wicker, wood or stones to the pristine form of baked clay. One of the favorite additives for clay is mica, a mineral flake that shines in the sun and adds a sparkle to ceramic pots.

Southwest potters have been using clay impregnated with mica since 200 A. D., and its source is in Taos, New Mexico. It is important to pay attention to the contrasts between the clean, unpolluted form and the quiet disturbance of an added material. Jacquie is one of the most innovative American Indian potters working today. He loves the changes in nature such as the wind, light, earth, colors when it rains, sky and color of the soil.

He also loves how it feels to pick up clay. Otellie Loloma, a Hopi woman who is respected as one of the best teachers in the history of native art education and Hopi pottery, became Jacquie's mentor and friend. He had clay in his backyard along the Missouri River and was continuously creating unusual clay objects. In 1975, Jacquie arrived in Santa Fe to enroll in the Institute of American Indian Art with a particular interest in the museum's program. He also learned about working with lamps, a method of heating and shaping glass with a torch, either in a basic beadmaking class or in an introductory session to borosilicate glass.

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