Hopi Polychrome Bowl with Cream Slip by Nampeyo of Hano


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Nampeyo of Hano, Hopi-Tewa Potter and Matriarch

Nampeyo of Hano: Mastering the Art of Sikyatki-inspired Pottery

This polychrome pottery bowl was created by Hopi Pueblo matriarch Nampeyo of Hano. It likely dates to the first decade of the twentieth century. It features a Sikyatki-inspired design on its interior. Four sets of three dots appear on its rim, and a raised area appears on the exterior. This raised area is pierced, so that the owner may easily hang the bowl should they choose to do so.

The elegant designs that appear here are typical of Nampeyo's work, but these designs never feel repetitive or uninspired. Rather, each one is worthy of close study, and this one is no exception. A thicker coil of clay appears on the rim's interior, which is also to be expected of a Nampeyo piece. This bowl is a fine example of the work of Nampeyo of Hano.

The bowl is unsigned, which is typical of Nampeyo's work. Included with the bowl is an appraisal report and letter of attribution written by Martha Struever.

Nampeyo of Hano (1857-1942) was a widely influential potter who lived and worked on the Hopi Reservation in Arizona. Nampeyo is regarded today as one of the finest Hopi potters and one of the most important figures in Native American pottery. Her work is displayed in museums and collections around the world. Little, if any, of her pottery is signed, but her work has been published and documented in detail and is easily identifiable to collectors. Nampeyo was taught how to make pottery by her grandmother and began earning an income as a potter while she was still just a teenager. Less interested in innovation than perfection, Nampeyo took an early interest in the design and form of ancient Hopi pottery, which she believed to be superior to the pottery being created by her contemporaries. She visited the ruins of ancient villages and copied designs from pieces of prehistoric and protohistoric pottery onto paper, then reproduced the designs on her own vessels.

Condition:  a thin protective finish has been added to the surface. A thin crack about two inches long appears near the rim, with a small clay segment missing. Wear on interior and exterior.

Provenance: this Polychrome Bowl with Cream Slip by Nampeyo of Hano is from the collection of a resident of New Mexico

Recommended Reading: Nampeyo, Hopi Potter: Her Artistry And Her Legacy by John Collins

TAGS: Hopi Pueblo, Fannie Polacca NampeyoNellie Nampeyo DoumaAnnie Healing NampeyoNampeyo of Hano, Hopi-Tewa Potter and Matriarch

Alternate side view of this bowl by Nampeyo.

Nampeyo of Hano, Hopi-Tewa Potter and Matriarch
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