Depending upon the operative definition and the exact historic period, historic Southwestern pottery emerged from lands in northern Mexico, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Colorado and Texas. But today most pottery comes from an area resembling a reclining "L" with its beginning somewhere northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona on the Hopi Reservation, and running eastward (roughly along I-40) through the Navajo Reservation and pueblos of Zuni, Acoma, Zia and Jemez, over to Isleta, and turning north along the Rio Grande all the way up to Taos. Pueblos of Laguna, Sandia, San Felipe, Santa Ana, Tesuque, Pohoaque, Nambe, Pecos, San Juan, Picuris and Taos also make their contribution but have held a back seat to the likes of San Ildefonso, Santa Clara, Cochiti and Santa Domingo in production quantity as well as overall quality. Today many of these pueblos are making a strong come-back as pottery producers with stand-out artists with such names as Montoya, Cata, Candeleria, Duran, Herrera, Pino, Tapia, Virgil and Garcia. Many artists now combine heritages of mixed Pueblo descent into creations utilizing the finest techniques of each Pueblo.
Value in pueblo pottery is determined from several factors, one being sheer age; another being the reputation of the artist; and a third being the artistic quality of the piece and lastly, the piece's condition. There are both past and present master artists represented in Spirit Horse Gallery, as well as young artists who do exceptional work, well on their way to becoming masters of the future.