Installation of "Last Dance with Orbs," 2011, stoneware in the background

Installation of "Last Dance with Orbs," 2011, stoneware in the background

The Future, Set in Clay

Mention “prophecy” in the year 2012 and many people will think of the ending of the Mayan long-count calendar, a generally misunderstood event that will occur on December 21. For sculptor Peter B. Jones, Prophecy is the name of an installation of his work at the Museum of Native Contemporary Arts (MoCNA) in Santa Fe, and 2012 is more significant as the 50th anniversary of the Institute for American Indian Arts. Jones was one of the first graduates of IAIA.

Jones is a master of ceramic sculpture, and one of the most acclaimed contemporary Iroquois artists working today. “Last Dance,” a central piece in the Prophecy exhibit, depicts eerie figures with wrinkled, angst-ridden faces and bodies that are cylindrical save for tacked-on and gnarled hands. They seem to wander as if in a fog, in close proximity but not particularly aware of each other. The installation draws on, in the words of the MoCNA documentation, “themes of ecology, creation, demise and the future.”

Prophecy is on display at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe through March 31.

Peter B. Jones, Prophecy

Peter B. Jones, Last Dance, 2010-11, stoneware, various dimensions (installation detail)

Peter B. Jones, Prophecy

Peter B. Jones, Yellowman, 2010-11, stoneware, 33 x 11 x 7 inches

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