H x 6 3/4" W
Maxine R. Toya New Snow
was born in 1948 into the Jemez Pueblo. She is a member of the
Corn Clan. Maxine began drawing and painting at the age of 5.
She began working with clay in 1971. Her mother, Marie Romero,
along with other family members, encouraged and inspired her
to learn the art of the long lived tradition of working with
clay, using ancient methods in the process.
Maxine is also a school teacher
by profession. She enjoys teaching the traditions passed down
to her from her ancestors to the younger generations so that
the legacy of her people will be continued for centuries to come.
Maxine specializes in hand
coiled clay sculptures of various contemporary pueblo people
images. She gathers her clay from within the hills of the Jemez
Pueblo. Then, she soaks the clay, sifts for impurities, hand
mixes, hand coils, hand shapes, sands the clay, hand paints using
natural pigments to make the colors, fires the sculptures outdoors,
with cedar chips, and stone polishes the final product.
Every piece of art she creates
is symbolic and unique in her eyes. She strives to achieve simplicity
and elegance in her sculptures. She signs her sculptures as:
Maxine Toya, Jemez, followed by the corn symbol to denote her
Clan Origin. She is related to: Damian Toya (son), Camilla Toya
(daughter), Laura Gachupin (sister), Gordon Foley (nephew), Bertha
Gachupin (cousin), Virginia Fragua (niece), Persingula Gachupin
(grandmother), and Juan B. Gachupin (great grandfather).
Maxine's figures are among
the most sought-after and the most difficult to obtain. She is
a devoted school teacher and will not allow her potting to take
time away from that, which results in very limited pottery production.
A combination of matte paints and polished slips is used on her
figures, giving them a very finished appearance.
Maxine states: I have a hard
time parting with my pieces; it's part of me that's going, too.
Whatever you have put into that piece has helped make you a better
person. When you are done and you hold it in your hands, to me,
it comes alive."
-2005 Santa Fe Indian Market
-New Mexico State Fair various years consecutively since 1974
1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place
-Eighth Northern Arts & Crafts Show various years consecutively
since 1974 1st, 2nd & 3rd Place
-Santa Fe Indian Market several years consecutively 1st, 2nd,
& 3rd Place various years
-Southern Pueblo Pottery 2,000
-Talking with the Clay
-American Indian Pottery 2nd Edition
-The Pueblo Storyteller
-Storytellers & Other Figurative Pottery
-Southwestern Pottery Anasazi to Zuni
-Southwestern Indian Pottery 1999 Edition