Join us as we continue our popular Pueblo pottery series, this month featuring Jicarilla Apache artist Dina Velarde.
A graduate of the Institute of American Indian Arts, where she received a BA in Museum Studies, Velarde parlayed her experiences into her position at MIAC (education assistant), which affords her the opportunity to work with schools and other youth groups visiting the museum. “My lifelong study of the arts has allowed me to come full circle,” says Velarde. “Working at MIAC, I am now able to assist in creating art projects intertwined with the teaching of Native history, while being surrounded and learning from museum professionals.”
Velarde’s specialty is micaceous pottery, ranging from light golden honey hues to rich dark black, all with the glistening mica specks that are enhanced with traditional firing. All her work is done by hand following the traditions of her ancestors.
Her work has no doubt benefited from her AA in Studio Arts, which included painting, drawing, and photography – her other specialty. “Growing up on the Jicarilla reservation, I always had an appreciation for art, much being encouraged by my grandmother, who did bead work and basketry,” says Velarde. “It wasn’t until much later that I would come to focus on micaceous pottery and photography.”