Encyclopedia Article


Jars, bowls, and other containers shaped out of ceramic material, such as earthenware (or clay), stoneware, and porcelain, which are subsequently fired, or super-heated. Subjecting pottery to heat initiates chemical changes in its ceramic material, including the removal of all water from the clay, which facilitates the hardening and strengthening of the earthenware form.

Historically, the Southwest is known for its centuries of pottery production, specifically earthenware forms finished with complex abstract animal figures and geometric symbols.

Photo Credit: 

"Painted pottery," photograph by Eduardo Fuss. Eduardo Fuss Photograph Collection (2011-001-b30-f04-0005). Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico.

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