Birdell Bourdon – Santa Clara – Tewa

Published on July 7, 2014 by Carol

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Birdell Bourdon, “Vine Flower”, was born in 1957 into the Santa Clara-Tewa Pueblo. Birdell was motivated and inspired to continue the long lived family tradition of hand coiling pottery using ancient methods from her Mother, the late Marie Sisneros. Marie was a Professor at the World College in Las Vegas, New Mexico. Marie taught Birdell all the fundamentals of pottery making the traditional way of her ancestors. Birdell has been making pottery since the of age 10. The lucrative aspect of the business encouraged Birdell to become an artist.

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Birdell specializes in the hand coiled Santa Clara black polished pottery. She gathers clay from the Tribal clay pits within the Santa Clara Pueblo. Then, she cleans, mixes hand coils, shapes, and fires her pottery the traditional way, outdoors with saw dust. She coils many different sizes and shapes, like wedding vases and bowls. She also makes melon patterns on her pottery. Birdell is a fine potter whose art is crafted very well. She is presently mentoring her children with the traditional ways of making pottery so they too may have a prolific future artistically if they need to fall back on the business of making pottery. Birdell signs her pottery as: Birdell, Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico.


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