Agnes Setalla Nahsonhoya+ Add Artist to My Preferences
Agnes is the daughter of Pauline Setalla and the niece of Eunice Navasie (Featherwoman). She has been an active potter for about 20 years.
The clay she uses comes from near her home. She uses no slip over the clay, but burnishes the natural clay, as it exists. She boils mustard weed for the black paint and various stones for red and white. The clay she uses produces a light peach color after firing. She paints with a yucca brush in traditional manner.
"I was born in Keams Canyon, Arizona and reared on a small ranch in Snowbird Canyon. I'm a Hopi potter and a member of the Bear Clan. My family has been working with clay for a very long time. I have always been interested in art.
"The art of pottery making was taught to me by my mother, Pauline Setalla, my aunt, Eunice Navasie, and my grandmother, Agnes Navasie. They taught me all the important steps of making clay into finished pottery. I have been making pottery for 18 years. It has always been a part of me.
"In 1992, I entered numerous pots in Northern Arizona's Hopi Show. I received my first blue ribbon for a pottery drum a rare piece.
"My style of pottery has changed through the years, starting with the white slip on natural clay, and then moving on towards the more traditional style of using no slip. I now mainly do the traditional style, it is more beautiful, and my grandmother started with traditional.
"The clay I use is found near my home. Different colors come from clays, mustard weed for black paint which is boiled until it is like taffy, and various stones for red and white. The clay I mainly use produces a light peach or red color after firing. My coloring instruments are a matchstick end, used for a dotted effect in design and a thin yucca brush.
"To show proper respect for the clay we need to continue doing it the old way, that means digging our clay, hand-coiling, hand-burnishing, and outdoor firing. I want to continue doing pottery for as long as I live. I enjoy working with my hands and using my mind to create new and different styles. I love my work, it give me enjoyment and pleasure to work with the clay. My teachings and heritage of pottery making continues today in the creations of my children. From the hands of my mother, to the dampness of the clay, to the smell of the smoke when the pots are fired, I am connected to the clay.
"As a member of the Bear Clan, my trademark is the Bear Claw."
Source: Provided by Tom Tallant and published in Hopi-Tewa Pottery 500 Artist Biographies by Gregory Schaaf