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Casas Grandes (Paquime) is a prehistoric archaeological ruin in Chihuahua, Mexico. It the early 1970's, a Mexican railroad worker named Juan Quezada began reproducing pottery in the authentic traditions of Casas Grandes. Today his pots are in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian, and he is the foremost living ceramic artist in Mexico. Most of Juan's family and over 300 other households in his village (Mata Ortiz) now follow in his path. The pots are formed by the potter's hands, no potter's wheel is used. The clay is obtained locally with a pick axe and shovel, as are the paints. Nothing is store bought. The pottery is dung fired on the ground, not in a kiln. Last, each piece is signed by the artist. Casas Grandes (Mata Ortiz) pottery began as a revival of a prehistoric ceramic traditional but has developed an artistic style, unique among the ceramic arts.