Clifford Kim Fragua ~ Jemez Pueblo

Published on July 20, 2013 by Amy

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Clifford Fragua
Clifford Fragua

Clifford Kim Fragua is from the Jemez Pueblo. He was born in 1957 and has been hand making pottery sculptures since 1970. He was inspired to learn the art of clay sculpting from his mother, the late Grace L. Fragua.

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Clifford specializes in handmade storytellers, humorous koshares (ceremonial clowns), animal figurines, nativities, Christmas ornaments and corn maidens. The materials Clifford uses consist of native clay and temper found around the Jemez Pueblo. Natural clay is also used as colors to paint each piece. The clay and sand is prepared by drying, grinding and sifting before it is mixed with water to produce the medium (weight of clay). The sculptures are then hand pinched, air dried, painted and wood fired. The major portion of each sculpture is hollow. The end product is a natural tan-buff color where it is not painted. His work is a unique blend of the traditional and contemporary styles, producing one of a kind pieces. Clifford is related to Emily Fragua-Tsosie, Bonnie Fragua and Carol Fragua-Gachupin (sisters).

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The City of Roanoke, Virginia, derives its name from the Algonquian Language meaning "shells." Native American tribes used shells as a form of currency and Roanoke was a region where the shells could be found.

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