The Maria Martinez Family Pottery Collection
The Millicent Rogers Museum has the distinction of owning an extraordinary collection of pottery by Maria and Julian Martinez of San Ildefonso Pueblo.
Over the years, the Martinez/Da family saved examples of Maria Martinez’s finest works with the intent of placing them in a New Mexico museum. It was the family’s wish that the pottery be shared on a permanent basis with the public.
Today, the Millicent Rogers collection of the Martinez family pottery represents the most important public holding of Maria Martinez’s pottery in the United States.
In 1984, the Millicent Rogers Museum was honored to have been chosen as the recipient of this historic collection, which was made possible only because of the generosity of an anonymous donor and the Martinez/Da Family. The family has also donated many of Maria Martinez’s awards, documents, photographs, and memorabilia, as well as their own pottery, the majority of which are part of the Museum’s permanent exhibition. These personal artifacts document the life as well as the creative success of Maria Martinez (1887-1980), probably the most renowned ceramic artist of her time, and whose career spanned 85 years. Maria Martinez first became famous in the early 20th century for her gleaming jet-black pottery, decorated with clay slip. She also created the traditional polychrome pottery, which she derived not only from her heritage but became her de facto trademark.