Laurencita Herrera (1912-1984) was Cochiti figurative artist Seferina Ortiz’ mother and teacher. Seferina is quoted by Barbara Babcock on page 40 of her seminal work, The Pueblo Storyteller: “My mother Laurencita Herrera taught me to make pottery in 1961…Mom was making the small figures , so she told me to try and I did”. Laurencita was actively making figures for decades before Helen Cordero’s first storyteller in 1964 (see Babcock, page 34).
This wonderful, playful and decidedly rare canteen by Laurencita dates to perhaps 1960. It is a traditional small canteen form awash in lovely white Cochiti slip (that same slip that is now largely unavailable with the clay source having been exhausted). It features 3 very active children climbing on the slopes of the canteen and emerging from the spout. The boys outfits are decorated with pottery designs, a depiction of modern blue jeans and a sports jersey, #84.
This is another wonderful find by collector Rutt Bridges from whose collection this piece was acquired.
Condition is excellent, original and unrestored.