New Mexico Distinguished Public Service Awards 2004
Recognizing Those Committed to Making a Difference
Ramoncita Sandoval
Ramoncita was born in San Juan Pueblo. raised in the traditional way of the Pueblo children. She was educated in her early years at San Juan Day School and Santa Fe Indian School. Later she acquired her higher education at Ft. Lewis College in Durango. Colorado and at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona.
She was taught to embroider at age 10 under guidance from women from the jemez Pueblo. While attending high school she experimented with different painting methods. And. in college she enrolled in classes which encompassed modern techniques in ceramics and sewing.
She continued to delve further into her culture and craft while working at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. By this time she had gained significant recognition and accolades for her work in preserving the traditional craft and sharing it with younger tribal members. She received many awards for her works from such organizations as the Eight Northern Indian Pueblo Council, the New Mexico State Fair, the Heard Museum in Phoenix and the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts organization. And, her award winning embroidery work, dresses, shirts, kilts and dolls are on display in most major museums including the Millicent Rogers Museum in Thos; the Museum of Man in San Diego; the Smithsonian in Washington among others.
Ms. Sandoval was among the country's most accomplished Native American artists honored for their work when she was recognized by the Southwestern Association for Indian Art's as the Lifetime Achievement award recipient last year. Ramoncita, at 71 ponders the future of the cultural traditions she has spent a lifetime preserving. She said "there's just about four or five on the pueblo that do embroidery now." So, she now teaches the traditional art of dressmaking to children on her pueblo.
Today she manages the co-op in the pueblo. Ms. Sandoval resides in Santa Fe dedicating her full attention to embroidery and to the teaching of others on the art of embroidery in San Juan Pueblo.