Polychrome Bowl with Animal Figures by Nampeyo of Hano


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Nampeyo of Hano, Hopi-Tewa Potter and Matriarch

This polychrome bowl was created by Hopi-Tewa potter Nampeyo of Hano. It features the rare and notable appearance of a pair of animal figures, situated in the interior. They are identical but appear on opposite sides and facing opposite directions, as do the long bands of design on which they rest. The various elements together form a complex image with appealing rotational symmetry. It is a pleasure to come across a piece with such a spirited and unusual design.

The bowl's coloration and patina are similarly attractive. The slip has a beautiful orange tone, which shifts a bit toward a more neutral cream color in certain areas. Years of handling resulted in a gently patinated surface. This is a rare and beautiful piece from one of the most important Native American potters.

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 the history of Native American pottery. Her work is displayed in major museum collections around the world. 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: good condition, light wear from handling and a few small rim chips

Provenance: Polychrome Bowl with Animal Figures by Nampeyo of Hano is from a private collection of a New Mexico resident

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 view of this pottery bowl.

Nampeyo of Hano, Hopi-Tewa Potter and Matriarch
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