Jemez potter, Carol Pecos, 66, creates storyteller figures that she hopes express kindness, togetherness, love, and caring. “ I am expressing myself as a woman and create what I know about,” she says. My mother was a potter. I learned at age 8 by watching her and grew up loving to work with clay. I feel good and energized by what I do . When I go into the clay world I just let go.”
She begins with no set plan but starts working with a piece of clay and follows where it leads her. The large section of her storytellers is formed by the traditional coiling method and is hollow, making her pieces lighter than expected. The smaller figures are lumps of clay that she sculpts into the shapes she wants.
She likes her storytellers to appear realistic, as if they could speak. One of her recent pieces is a turtle whose back is covered with children. One girl is holding a bowl, another a vase: a boy is cradling a dog. She may clothe her children traditionally but give them modern items such as basketballs.