Vickie Martinez-Tafoya (Koe-Sawe, meaning: Buffalo Steps) is a consummate pottery artist of the Bear Clan from Santa Clara Pueblo. Born in 1967 into a family filled with keen Santa Clara potters, she began making pottery at an early age and has been actively making fine pottery since 1983. Like her siblings, Vickie was inspired to continue the long tradition of working with clay from her grandmother, Flora Naranjo, and mother, Barbara Martinez. After learning and years of creating her own pottery with her family, Vickie began dating her eventual husband, Joey Chavarria, in the late 1980’s. It was then that she had the good fortune of acquiring two more pottery mentors.
Shortly after viewing her pottery, Vickie’s soon to be mother-in-law, Stella Chavarria,
and her mother, Teresita Naranjo, became her new mentors. They both helped
Vickie further develop and refine her work. At that time Vickie was encouraged to
take her skillsets to the next level when making her pottery. As a result, the
influences regarding quality and style that were made by Stella and Teresita are evident in Vickie’s work today.