Whoa! You can't favorite your own shop.

Whoa! You can't buy your own item.

Whoa! You can't favorite your own item.

Whoa! You can't add your own item to a list.

Add this item to a treasury!

You don't have any treasuries yet. Enter a title below to create one.

This item has been added.

View your treasury.

This item sold on July 17, 2014.

Like this item?

Add it to your favorites to revisit it later.
Great Sale Price, $100 off original price! Now $165. One of a kind face jug by Jim McDowell, the Black Potter, this work is highly collectible in the folk art genre also known as ugly jugs.

This is a wheel thrown piece with sculpted features, wide-set deeply hooded eyes, indented nose, thick ropey lips, jagged china teeth, and tribal scarification.

One outstanding feature is a serpent head at the top of the nose. Inscriptions on the back read, "Free My Body, I Free My Mind," and "Open Your Heart to Love." The pot is just about 8.5" tall, finished with a buttermilk glaze, and fired in a soda kiln. During firing the soda adds speckles and texture to the pot.

Enslaved people made face jugs in early America. Believed to be used for spiritual practices, they originated from an amalgamation of various beliefs, hoodoo, voodoo, African rituals, and Christianity. The snake is symbolic, often of evil or to ward off evil. Scarring is tribal and the ugly teeth again are to frighten. I am inspired by all of this when I make my face jugs.

I've been making face jugs for many years as an homage to my ancestors who survived the Middle Passage and to my four times Great-Aunt Evangeline who was a slave potter in Jamaica. There's hardly a culture that exists that doesn't have a history of including the face image in pottery or sculpture. Face jugs are common in the southern U.S., but as far as I know I am the only Black potter who creates them from my African-Caribbean heritage. My face jugs have traveled to museums, art centers, and galleries internationally. For information see my website www.blackpotter.com

SALE PRICE Face Jug "Free My Body, I Free My Mind," Pottery OOAK


  • Handmade item
  • Materials: clay, glaze, china shards
  • Only ships within United States.
  • Feedback: 13 reviews
  • Favorited by: 3 people