Santa Clara Pueblo - Navajo
Ethel “Turquoise Rock” Gutierrez-Yazza
is a full blooded Native American Indian. She was born in 1959 into
the Santa Clara-Tewa Pueblo.
Ethel began working with clay at the age of 5. She was taught all the
fundamentals of hand coiling traditional black pottery and using the
ancient traditional methods in the process, which were past down from
generation to generation.
The lucrative aspect of the business also inspired her to become an
Ethel specializes in stone polished black Santa Clara pottery. She gathers
her clumps of clay from within the Santa Clara Pueblo. Then, Ethel soaks
the clay to break it down. She mixes the clay with volcanic ash along
with other natural elements. She begins the hand coiling methods and
hand shapes her pottery. After the pottery is formed she begins carving
her pottery with meaningful designs known to her people. Her carvings
include serpents, kiva steps, feathers, and water waves which all symbolize
important religious beliefs to her people.
She signs her pottery as: Ethel Yazza, Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico.
Effie Garcia, Julie Gutierrez, Sally Gutierrez-Tafoya (sisters), and
Eugene Gutierrez (brother) are among a few of her relatives continuing
the long lived tradition of hand coiling pottery.
-Eighth Northern Arts & Crafts Show 2nd Place
-Cowboys & Indians Magazine
-Pueblo Indian Pottery 750 Artist Biographies