Her first piece of art was a clay dog at the age of four. After formal training and the development of her own style, Swentzell began to create full-length clay figures that represent the complete spectrum of the human spirit. She feels that many people are out of touch with their environment and hopes relating to her expressive characters will help them get back in touch with their surroundings and feelings. Her figures represent a full range of emotions and irrepressible moods. Swentzell focuses a lot on interpretative female portraits attempting to bring back the balance of power between the male and female, inherently recognized in her own culture. Additionally, she increasingly uses a powerful sense of humor to communicate.
Her work is in such high demand that people line up by the dozens at her booth at shows like Santa Fe Indian Market where she won Best of Sculpture in 1999 with a larger-than-life bronze. Though steeped in her own culture, Swentzell's work demonstrates an astounding universality, speaking to people of all cultures.
Selected Honors and Awards
Selected Bibliography & Publications
2016- The Pueblo Food Experience by Roxanne Swentzell and Patricia M. Perea Flowering Tree Permaculture Institute by Museum of New Mexico Press
American Indian, 2008. Book Published by Gold Street Press "A Universal Language" pgs. 190-191
Southwest Art Official Indian Market Magazine, August 2001. Dottie Indyke “Roxanne Swentzell” pages 190-193.
UnArt Populaire Foundation Cartier, May 2001 pages 166-171.
Gaia’s Garden A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture, Toby Hemenway 2001, Chelsea Green Publishing Company, pages 14, 15, 189.
Everson Ceramic National 2000 Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, NY page 67.
(Video) Roxanne Swentzell - Living Portraits of New Mexico Artists
Kate McGraw “Grandaddy of Them All” Cowboys & Indians September 2000: Pages 113-114.
“Who Stole the Teepee?”, Fred Nahwoosky, Richard Hill, Heard Museum 2000, page 64.
Pueblo People Ancient Traditions Modern Lives, Marcia Keegan, 1999 Clear Light Publishers, NM page 184.
Santa Clara Portraits A Proud Tradition, Neil Chapman, Avanyu Passage West by Southwest 1999, pages 84-85.
Clay People Pueblo Indian Figurative Traditions, Jonathon Batkin, Wheelwright Museum 1999 “Roxanne Swentzell” pages 24-31.
Native Peoples “clay people” Gussie Fautleroy 1999, pages 27-30.
Pueblo Artists Portraits, Toba Pato Tucker, Museum of NM Press 1998, Cover “Roxanne” also pages 9-11.
“Roxanne Swentzell & Carol Krena” A book of writings by Carol & Roxanne, Four Winds Gallery 1997.
John Krena. In the Spirit of the Ancestors: The Kappmeyer Collection of Native American Art. Erie, PA: Erie Art Museum in conjunction with Four Winds Gallery, 1997.
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Susan Peterson. Pottery by American Indian Women: The Legacy of Generations. New York: Abbeville Press in conjunction with the National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1997. Pages 195-201.
Roxanne Swentzell. "Hearing with Our Hearts." Chapter in Surviving in Two Worlds: Contemporary Native American Voices. Lois Crozier-Hogle and Darryl Babe Wilson, eds. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1997.
Designer/Builder (A Journal of the Human Environment) March 1997, Kingsley and Jerilou Hammett, “Permaculture from Barren Land to Lush Oasis” pages 15-22, also cover page.
Lawrence Abbot. "Roxanne Swentzell," Indian Artist Fall 1997: Pages 20-25.
Permaculture Drylands Journal P.D.I. “Growing a Permaculture” by Vicki Marvick and Roxanne Swentzell, 1996.
A Question of Balance Artist and Writers on Motherhood, Rosenberg 1995 papier-mâché press “Roxanne Swentzell” pages 81-88.
The Straw Bale House, Athena Swentzell Steen, Bill Steen, David Bainbridge, 1994 A Real Goods Independent Living Book page 273.
Watchful Eyes: Native American Women Artists. Phoenix: Heard Museum, 1994.
How I make My Sculptures Roxanne Swentzell, self-published 1993.
Roxanne Swentzell. "Our Home Flowering Tree (An Experimental Place in Sustainable Living Systems)." Self-published,1993.
Droppings An Occasional Publication of Sustainable Living Systems, Joel Glanzberg and Roxanne Swentzell, 7 issues 1991-1995, published by Flowering Tree.
Roxanne Swentzell continues to speak through her clay while living her life among her family in Santa Clara Pueblo. Besides sculpting, she gardens, builds houses, and runs a non-profit organization on sustainable living methods.
(Video) Roxanne Swentzell - Born from Clay (Arte Libre Gallery)
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(Video) PRESERVING A PUEBLO'S PAST WITH SEEDS: A Conversation with Roxanne Swentzell
1985-88 and 1992-Present
1996 - 1997
1991 - 1996
•Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, Santa Fe, NM
Current Gallery Representation
•Four Winds Gallery, Double Bay NSW, Sydney Australia
Rox Miscellaneous Photos
Tower Gallery - Roxanne Swentzell Biography (2022)
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