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May 8, 2020 @ 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Depart from SAR
660 Garcia St
Santa Fe, NM 87505
Amy Schiffer

POSTPONED: From the Source: Community Pottery, Creativity, and Production from Tsankawi to San Ildefonso

IAF 489. Jar, c. 1890. Yellow Deer (1847-1910).
San Ildefonso Pueblo.


Cost per person:
$250 (Includes a $25 non-refundable tax-deductible donation to SAR)

Field trip limited to 20 participants.

Tsankawi is one of several large ancestral Tewa pueblo villages on the Pajarito Plateau that the ancestors of San Ildefonso Pueblo occupied before establishing their contemporary pueblo in the Northern Rio Grande Valley. The village continues to hold a special place in the histories, traditions, and futures of contemporary San Ildefonso People. Joseph “Woody” Aguilar, an enrolled member of San Ildefonso Pueblo and anthropologist, along with Bruce Bernstein, Director of Innovation & Senior Curator at the Coe Center, will provide unique insights into the multiple meanings and histories of Tsankawi and its ongoing relationship to the people of San Ildefonso Pueblo. We will also hike over to the Duchess Castle site, where Rose Dougan and Vera von Blumenthal worked with San Ildefonso potters as the first Pottery Improvement Project that would lead to the Indian Arts Fund and Indian Market.

San Ildefonso is world renowned for its pottery heritage creating more styles than other villages in northern New Mexico. After the hike at Tsankawi, we’ll head over to San Ildefonso for a pottery firing and lunch at the home of Russell Sanchez, an award-winning potter and one of the co-curators of “San Ildefonso Pottery: 1600 – 1930,” currently on exhibit at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture (MIAC) in Santa Fe. On the way back to Santa Fe, we’ll visit the Poeh Cultural Center for a tour of “Di Wae Powa” (“they came back”), exhibiting the story of bringing home 100 Tewa pots from the Smithsonian Institution. Erik Fender, also an award-winning potter from San Ildefonso, and the third co-curator of the San Ildefonso exhibit at MIAC, will join us and give his insights into the collection.

Photo courtesy of Bruce Bernstein.

Study Leaders:

Bruce Bernstein, PhD, is the Director of Innovation & Senior Curator at the Coe Center, where he develops public programming, working directly with Indigenous artists and the permanent collection of traditional arts. His previous positions include Assistant Director for Collections and Research at the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution; Chief Curator and Director of Santa Fe’s Museum of Indian Arts and Culture and Laboratory of Anthropology; and Executive Director of the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts. He has dedicated his three decades of work in museums to collaborative work and modeling new partnerships.

Joseph Aguilar is an enrolled member of San Ildefonso Pueblo, and received his Ph.D. from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. His primary research focuses on the archaeology of the North American Southwest, with a specific interest in Spanish-Pueblo relations during the late 17th century, following the arrival of Spaniards into the Northern Rio Grande region. His general research interests include Indigenous Archaeology, landscape archaeology, and tribal historic preservation. He currently serves as on the Advisory Board of the Tribal Historic Preservation Office at San Ildefonso, and was recently in residence at the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe as the 2014-15 Katrin H. Lamon Fellow.

Photo courtesy of SAR.

Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous. The Tsankawi portion of the day includes hiking on uneven ground and climbing up and down ladders up to 15-feet tall.

Includes: Transportation in a air-conditioned coach; water and snacks; catered lunch; entry fees and gratuities.

In conjunction with this trip, Bruce and Eric will be teaching a two-part class (May 5 & 12) that takes a closer look at the San Ildefonso pieces in the Indian Arts Research Center (IARC) collection as well as the exhibit at MIAC. The class registration is separate from the member trip and more information will be announced.

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