Design Elements: Sgraffito

Sgraffito and painted quail, sun face and geometric design on a red seed pot
Red seed pot decorated with a sgraffito and painted quail, sun face and geometric design
by Joseph Lonewolf, Santa Clara

2 in H by 2 1/4 in Dia
Sgraffito geometric design on a red jar
Red jar decorated with a asgraffito geometric design
by Wilma Baca Tosa, Jemez

6 in H by 6 1/2 in Dia
Sienna rim and spots on a black jar with sgraffito bear paws, avanyu, kiva step and geometric design
Black jar with sienna rim and spots decorated with sgraffito avanyu, bear paws, kiva step and geometric design
by Sammy Naranjo, Santa Clara

4 1/4 in H by 5 in Dia
Sgraffito feather, horned toad and geometric design on a black seed pot with sienna spots
Black seed pot with sienna spots decorated with a sgraffito feather, horned toad and geometric design
by Dean Haungooah, Santa Clara

1 1/4 in H by 1 3/4 in Dia

As a design element in the Native American pottery world, sgraffito was first introduced to the marketplace by Joseph Lonewolf. Sgraffito is similar to etching in that the surface of the vessel is scratched with an implement to create a design. The form has developed to where some potters put one (or more) slips on the clay form of their vessel, then scratch that surface before firing the piece, while others apply one (or more) slips to their vessel and fire it before scratching the surface. It depends on the final effect they are trying to achieve.

Sgraffito and painted floral and hummingbird design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar decorated with a sgraffito and painted floral and hummingbird design
by Martin Olivas, Mata Ortiz

6 1/4 in H by 5 1/4 in Dia
Measurement includes stand
Sgraffito avanyu design on a gunmetal black plate
Gunmetal black plate decorated with a sgraffito avanyu design
by Tony Da, San Ildefonso

1 3/4 in H by 11 in Dia
Sgraffito Night of the Dead motif on a black and white jar
Black and white jar decorated with a sgraffito Night of the Dead motif
by Hector Javier Martinez, Mata Ortiz

8 in H by 6 1/4 in Dia
Measurement includes stand
Sgraffito Sioux design plus inlaid stones on a black jar
Black jar decorated with sgraffito Sioux design plus inlaid stones
by Red Starr, Sioux

3 3/4 in H by 5 1/4 in Dia