The Native American people of this region have lived in harmony and respect with their natural environment.

Stories of their emergence and of their living history are handed down from one generation to the next through prayer and song. The traditional knowledge of their ancestors is the basis for how they live today and is reflected in architecture, traditions, arts and ceremony.

We are most grateful for the blessings of our Earth Mother as she provides us with all that we need to sustain our livelihood now, and into the future. As native people living in modern times, we have a responsibility to maintain balance with our natural environment and world trends. As you explore this collection of traditional and contemporary artwork, you will see memories of the past as well as the voice and creativity of modern native people.

We invite you to enjoy this celebration of cultural art.

Joshua Madalena

Joshua Madalena, an enrolled Jemez Tribal member, a former two time governor and a county commissioner, a former NM State Monument manager and a historian on Jemez Culture & History is an internationally renowned artist. He has turned his talents to successfully replicating a 300 year-old lost art tradition of the Hemish People. For over a decade, he has extensively researched the art and production of Black-on-White pottery traditions. His pioneering trial and error efforts have lead in the rediscovery of this art, much to the delight of collectors. Following Spanish re-conquest of northern New Mexico in 1692, the Jemez people made a conscious decision to temporarily end this tradition rather than allow their pots to be confiscated as taxes by the Spanish (Encomienda System).

But, by the early 18th century, the black-on-white techniques were lost. Mesa Verde National Park has chosen Joshua’s creations as officially sanctioned replicas of Black-on-White traditional pottery for sale in the Park’s Visitor Center gift shops.

“I was brought up respecting family and cultural values. Over two decades ago, I come to find out that over 300 years ago, we lost a significant portion of our cultural heritage: Jemez Black-on-White pottery traditions. I felt as a traditional person, it was unacceptable to live without this pottery tradition. That’s when I realized it was time to search for the true recipe of the identity of my people. After a decade of trial and error, a few hundred broken pottery pieces, my pioneering efforts finally became successful. Today, I make black-on-white pottery vessels in honor and respect of the ancestors and all of their sacrifices.”