Michael, who is from Laguna Pueblo in New Mexico, is the son of Wallace and Rosemary Kanteena. He earned a Bachelors degree in Fine Arts from Eastern New Mexico University at Portales, New Mexico in 1981.
His present style of work began to develop six years ago. Wishing to learn about his ancient roots, which he knew went back to New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon (the “Anasazi” culture), he began collecting archaeological catalogues of pottery forms. Through extensive study, trial and error, and even consultation with archaeologists, he developed his pottery into remarkably close recreations of the Chacoan and Mesa Verde pieces. Since then, Michael has allowed his studies to expand into the Mimbres and ancient Mexican Indian clay forms, where human and animal effigies are common. More recently he has explored the ancient Hopi figures and designs.
Michael has received awards in recognition of his work including first place at Gallup Ceremonials for the last three years. His work was listed in the August 1997 issue of Southwest Art Magazine as one of 400 top Native American artists and was the subject of a feature article in the Gallup Independent Newspaper. His work is now appearing in several galleries and museums throughout the Southwest.