Extraordinary Art – the Potters of Mata Ortiz
Galeria de Ollas is dedicated solely to displaying and selling the works of the finest Mata Ortiz potters. It is one of only a few galleries in the world that sells only Mata Ortiz pottery. We offer a wide variety of the finest pieces, many of museum quality, over a wide range of prices. We would also like to share with our visitors and clients the incredible story of this village, its people, and their development of this art form.
With a population of only about 2000 and over 400 potters, Mata Ortiz may be the greatest modern concentration of artistic creativity on the face of the earth. The contemporary Mata Ortiz ceramics movement started by Juan Quezada about 1971 has flourished with his artistic maturation, and the contributions of his family members and many other villagers. Prominent families of potters include the Quezada, Gallegos/Martinez, Guillen/Cota, Ledezma, Lopez, Ortiz, Villaba, and many others. There are now many fine second-generation potters. In 1999 Juan Quezada was awarded the Premio Nacional de las Ciencias y las Artes, the highest award given by the Mexican government.
The highly skilled artists are not bound by the traditional designs from the ancient civilization of Casas Grandes that gave birth to their art form. There are similarities to the finer Southwestern Native American pueblo and Mimbres pottery. Many of the pieces still include design elements of ancient Casas Grandes pieces � the �plumed serpent�, interlocking spirals, lightning and other symbols. However, Mata Ortiz potters have shared, innovated, experimented, and developed their own artistic styles while continuing to maintain the high quality workmanship for which Juan Quezada set the standard. Mata Ortiz pottery is increasingly being displayed in galleries, and museums throughout the United States and the homes of many collectors. However, it is still quite affordable.