Relatively unknown, Isabel Montoya played an important role in the development of San Ildefonso pottery.
Isabel was the cousin of Maria Martinez and worked closely with her through the glory years.
There are very few of her pots around but she was an excellent potter.
Many of her children and grandchildren have continued in her footsteps.
Her children Angelita, Tony, Gilbert, Pat and Helen had excellent pottery and painting work.
Both Angelita and Helen have children who were very influential in the current San Ildefonso and Santa Clara pottery community.
Sandra Chaparro is currently one of the few descendents that make the beautiful large plates. Many of Helen's children are excellent potters such as Kathleen Gutierrez and Geraldine Gutierrez Shije.
This is an early bowl by Isabel Atencio Montoya and it is signed "Belle" on the bottom in the clay. This bowl has a classic form with a wide feather pattern, which is often seen in early San Ildefonso pottery, but was a design later replaced by the narrow feathers.