Summer 2013 - Southwest
Take Two

Albuquerque, NM

August 2, 2013

Local Information

Area Map


Photographs and Commentary
Click on picture to enlarge

We got here yesterday around noon. We spent the night before in Amarillo, TX, about 65 miles east of the New Mexico border. The trip here was short so we had a leisurely breakfast and headed out figuring we would get into town and check in after lunch. We forgot one minor detail... the time zone change. We could not check in because the room was not ready so we headed into Old Town to kill some time. We have been here several times before. It is here that Susie bought her first Storyteller and began her quest for more. We were in Old Town for less than a hour before Susie snagged another Storyteller for her collection. I figured that Susie would buy at least one more, but I didn't think it would happen so soon on the trip. Maybe if I remembered the time zone change, I would have a little more money in our bank account.

New Dena Suina Storyteller
(iPhone photo at time of purchase)

Jemez Pueblo

Jemez Pueblo is located on New Mexico Route 4, about a hour north of Albuquerque and a hour and twenty minutes south of Santa Fe.

A few months ago Susie wrote to a couple of potters whose Storytellers she has collected. She asked if it was possible to meet so that Susie could get a better understanding of the process involved. One of the artists, Linda Fragua, called Susie and asked her to come on this day because the Jemez Pueblo celebrates the annual Saint Persingula Feast. When we arrived at Linda Fragua's home, we were invited, along with other guests, to have a meal with her. After the meal Susie and I joined Linda in her workshop where they discussed the process of making the Storyteller figurines. One by-product of this visit was that (surprise, surprise) Susie bought one of the recently completed Storytellers.

After our visit to Linda Fragua's shop, Susie and I walked to the plaza to watch more than a hundred dancers, of all ages, performing traditional dances. We also walked around the Pueblo to see what different crafts were available for sale. The time spent in Jemez Pueblo was very enlightening for both Susie and me. We have been to other pueblos, but never invited into a home to share a meal. Nor have we ever seen native dances performed in their home environment.

The Jemez Pueblo, as well as several of the other pueblos we visited before, has very strict rules about the use of photography in the Pueblo. The Jemez rules are very simple and very strict... No Photography at all. There are signs throughout the pueblo stating, "No cameras, no cell phones, no video or any other recording devices... Violators will be prosecuted." Since Jemez Pueblo is recognized as a sovereign nation, violators are prosecuted under tribal laws. I had brought my camera along, but kept it in the truck. Susie and I both turned off our cell phones. As a result of these rules, we have no pictures of the Pueblo or the dancing. The pictures below were taken in Linda Fragua's workshop and the camera returned to the truck.

One note that I need to make is that while I copyright the pictures of the Storytellers, the artist own the rights to their work.

Left, Right and below left, Susie's Purchase in Jemez


Below, A similar Storyteller ready to be painted

Another one of Linda Fragua's Storytellers

A Koshare (Clown figurine) drying. It will be sanded before painting.

An unfinished Nativity scene

Susie with Linda Fragua in the workshop

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