Mary R. Lucero was born into Jemez Pueblo in 1948. She was inspired to learn the art of working with clay by her grandmother, Magnita Lucero (one of the last few Jemez potters still making pottery after the attempted revival of Jemez pottery in the 1920s and 30s). Magnita introduced Mary to the hills that provide the best clay for Jemez pots. Her grandmother also taught Mary where to gather other natural materials and pigments from sacred grounds on the pueblo. Magnita taught Mary how to mix, shape, paint, and fire pottery the traditional way, outdoors and with sheep dung.