Arts in the 1920’s and 30’s
The 1920’s and 30’s were the birth period of many great things, including music, but it was also the time of rebirth, so to speak, of more ancient art forms. Around this time, Pueblo pottery, Dine weaving, and Hispanic woodcarving all revived in New Mexico. However, these art forms were not quite the same as they once were. Some were more modernized, while some even used older technology again to gain a more traditional feel. This demonstrates the idea of continuity amid change, and it shows how each of these art forms (Pueblo pottery, Dine weaving, and Hispanic woodcarving) changed in many ways, while certain aspects of each stayed the same, and they each remained an important part of the culture.
Pueblo pottery definitely demonstrates the theme of continuity amid change. The fact that there is still pueblo pottery being made shows continuity. According to Rick Dillingham, many, like the Hopi and the Zia potters have carried on traditions that began in their villages centuries ago, though tradition is always bring reinvented. The technology used to make the pottery has changed, making the process of pottery making easier and faster, but older methods of pottery making have still lived on anyway. The Sgraffito technique, for example, is new to pueblo pottery, but in other parts of the world, it is actually an old technique. Although styles and tastes change over time, people, like in the Acoma Pueblo still keep stylistic traditions alive. Another change is the function of the pottery. It was once used practically, but now it is perceived as art. However, the pottery is still traded among the pueblos as it was for centuries, and ceremonial and service pottery is still being made.
As for the Navajo weaving, it too demonstrates Roberts' ideas of continuity amid change. Navajo weavers did change their ways of making rugs as newer technology was being invented and becoming available, but they returned to older ways of rug making. At one point they stopped putting their native designs into their rugs, but due to the persuasion of the traders and collectors, they were convinced to put their native designs back into their work. According to Peter Iverson, one thing that also changed was that weaving became more marketable and less of a trade item. Navajos began wearing blankets made from outside places, and selling the blankets of their own manufacture. Though the Navajo, or Dine weaving practices changed, they still continued to produce their traditional Dine rugs with their native designs on it.
There is also local hispanic weaving that revived in the 1920's and 30's. Roberts said that the Chimayo weavers produced hand spun, vegetable dyed blankets once again, just as their ancestors used to.The demand for these grew. It was now viewed as art, though they once served other purposes. These are still being produced a century after their ancestors had made them, which is continuity, and the growth of its demand and the change of its uses show the change amid the continuity.
Roberts also mentioned that the Hispanic woodcarving is an art which was almost lost. Whole families revived this art in the 1920's and 30's. One family was the Jose Dolores Lopez family of Cordova, which is a village near Chimayo. According to Mary Montano, the Lopez family agreed to carve non-traditional items (such as record tracks and screen doors) with their traditional items. Lopez stopped painting his carvings when people found them too bold and bright for their liking. The people who sold Jose's work in Santa Fe suggested to him that he should no longer paint his carvings. This started the Cordova school of carving, which was known for it;s lack of paint as well as its reliance on detailed incising and chip carvings to distinguish the features of each and every piece, This also began a market for these carvings, which made this almost dead art popular once again.
Each of these art forms are very important to New Mexico, and many of the people living here. The revival of these art forms brought back very old traditions of certain cultures, and it also created a great market for traditional weaving, artistic pottery, and well defined, unpainted carving. The pottery and the weaving each became more for artistic purposes and are used much less for functionality. The Anglos even collect these forms of art. Each individual piece of art is now thought of as a collectors item because they are each unique. The way these forms of art have changed throughout the years, while still retaining their original beauty and ways of design demonstrate the idea of continuity amid change.