Born at Acoma Pueblo in 1951, Rebecca Lucario is a member of the Yellow Corn Clan. She has been actively making pottery since 1965 and is recognized as one the finest Acoma potters working today with her exquisite fine line eye dazzlers and Mimbres revival designs. Her pottery is thin and elegant, her designs perfectly executed.
Rebecca learned this art growing up with her sisters: Diane Lewis, Judy Lewis, Marilyn Ray and Carolyn Concho, and she's passing the tradition on to her children. She says the ancient pottery-making techniques were passed to her from her maternal grandmother, Delores S. Sanchez (1902-1991). "My grandmother let me play with the mud they used to plaster their adobe house," she recalls. "We made little animal figures and pinch pots with red clay. I still have two pots that I made at the age of eight. One is a flower plate, the other a vase with lines. She never let us play with her clay because clay is very sacred."
In Rebecca's process she fires her pieces twice, first in an electric kiln to test the clay, then outside in the traditional manner which she says gets much hotter than the kiln firing. Her designs are so fine she may spend up to 12 hours spread over several days just on the black design work for one of her larger pots. She says she doesn't measure or plot her designs with tools, she spaces the basic design elements purely by eye. She uses a yucca brush to paint her designs and signs her creations R. Lucario.
The most difficult pieces of pottery to make are plates (they tend to buckle, warp or crack when fired). Rebecca has been known to make plates up to 30 inches in diameter. She explains, "The secret to making plates is to not make them too thin or too thick. You also have to knead the clay well to get out all the air bubbles." One of her amazing plates was featured on the cover of the 2002 catalog for the highly acclaimed Changing Hands: Art without Reservation touring exhibit organized by the American Craft Museum of New York City. She gasped when she learned that the Museum created a giant banner of her plate and unfurled it at the opening of the exhibit. "The recognition kind of snuck up on me," she said.
Since 1983 Rebecca has been a consistent ribbon winner at the annual SWAIA Santa Fe Indian Market with several 1st Place ribbons in her collection.