This striking, hand painted round platter was made by Loma of Arizona in the late 1950s. The ivory colored pottery body has three sets of three hand cut notches placed around the rim (L of A made ashtrays, but they were shaped differently than this). The edges are spattered in black specks, a decoration often seen on Loma pieces, that form a border that continues down over the sides. It's elevated on a round foot ring about 1/2 inch high.
The central motif is the stylized head of a Native American brave, done in bold black with a whoosh of turquoise "feathers," very reminiscent of the Art Deco Pontiac hood ornament. It's surrounded by six black symbols representing cattle brands. The bottom is hand signed in black "Loma of Ariz." Our research shows that the ceramics firm was owned by Elmer and Loretta Gatti starting in the mid-fifties in Phoenix. This pottery is not rare, but not easily found, either, and we have not seen another piece with this design on it.
The platter measures 10 inches in diameter, stands 1 1/2 inches high and weighs about 1 1/2 pounds. The foot ring is 4 3/4 inches in diameter and has a small chip on its inner side (pictured). The piece is in exceptional condition otherwise, very immaculate and appearing unused. It plays well in Southwest, Art Deco and Moderne interiors.