Franklin Tenorio

Santo Domingo Pueblo pottery artist Franklin Tenorio
Franklin Tenorio

Franklin Tenorio is a traditional potter from Santo Domingo Pueblo. Like many residents of Santo Domingo, Franklin worked for the US Forest Service as a wildland firefighter for 28 years. Then he worked with his cousin, Thomas Tenorio, and learned to make pottery the traditional way.

I see Franklin often, and a couple times a year he'll hand me a small ceramic saucer painted with a bird or flower or other traditional design. He has accepted the honesty of my interest enough that he'll sometimes share with me the Keres words for a particular design and try to express the meaning of that in English for me, but Eastern Keres to English is an imprecise translation no matter who tries to make it. He is usually able to get the spirit across because of the connection that has grown between us. He also visits before pueblo feast days and brings me a loaf of freshly baked pueblo bread with a personal invitation.

The best thing about Pueblo bread: the wheat is grown from indigenous seeds (unmessed with by Monsanto and gang) and all the other ingredients have similar provenance. And like when making pottery, the bakers pray the whole time they are cooking. One slice is like eating a full meal, it feeds the spirit, too.

Bird and floral design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird and floral design
10 1/4 in H by 7 1/2 in Dia
Bird and floral design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird and floral design
10 1/4 in H by 9 1/4 in Dia
Bird and floral design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird and floral design
9 1/2 in H by 6 3/4 in Dia
Bird and floral design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with geometric design
9 in H by 7 1/2 in Dia
Bird and floral design on a polychrome pot
Polychrome jar with bird and floral design
8 1/2 in H by 7 1/4 in Dia
Bird and geometric designs on a flat-topped polychrome jar
Polychrome flat-topped jar with bird and geometric designs
3 1/4 in H by 8 1/4 in Dia
Bird and geometric designs on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird and geometric designs
9 3/4 in H by 9 in Dia
Bird, floral and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird, floral and geometric design
6 1/2 in H by 7 1/2 in Dia
Bird, floral and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird, floral and geometric design
8 3/4 in H by 9 in Dia
Bird, floral and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird, floral and geometric design
10 1/2 in H by 10 in Dia
Bird and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird and geometric design
10 1/2 in H by 9 in Dia
Bird, floral and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with bird, floral and geometric design
9 in H by 9 1/2 in Dia
Flower design inside and geometric design outside on a polychrome flat top jar
Polychrome flat top jar with flower design inside and geometric design outside
3 1/2 in H by 9 1/2 in Dia
Polychrome bowl with a geometric design inside
Polychrome bowl with a geometric design inside
3 1/2 in H by 8 in Dia
Bird design inside and bird and geometric design outside on this polychrome jar
Polychrome jar with a bird design inside and bird and geometric design outside
5 3/4 in H by 13 in Dia
Bird design inside and bird and geometric design outside on a polychrome low shoulder jar
Polychrome low shoulder jar with a bird design inside, bird and geometric design outside
5 in H by 12 3/4 in Dia
Bird and geometric design outside and large bird design inside a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar decorated with a bird and geometric design outside and large bird design inside
6 3/4 in H by 12 in Dia
Four direction bird, cloud and geometric design on this lidded polychrome jar
Lidded polychrome jar with a four direction bird, cloud and geometric design
11 in H by 6 1/4 in Dia
Black and white bird and floral design inside with geometric design outside on a polychrome jar
Polychrome low shoulder jar with a bird design inside, bird and geometric design outside
5 in H by 12 3/4 in Dia
Bird and geometric design outside and large bird design inside a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar decorated with a bird and geometric design outside and large bird design inside
3 1/2 in H by 5 3/4 in Dia
Black and white flower, cloud and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar decorated with a black and white flower, cloud and geometric design
7 1/2 in H by 8 1/4 in Dia
Bird and geometric design on this low-shoulder polychrome jar
Polychrome low-shoulder jar decorated with a bird and geometric design
5 3/4 in H by 11 1/2 in Dia
Bird, cloud and geometric design on a polychrome jar
Polychrome jar decorated with a bird, cloud and geometric design
8 3/4 in H by 6 in Dia
Bird, cloud and geometric design on this polychrome vase
Polychrome vase decorated with a bird, cloud and geometric design
8 1/2 in H by 6 in Dia

Santo Domingo Pueblo Potters