In Search of Nampeyo: The Early Years, 1875-1892
Author: Steve Elmore, Foreword by Rachel Sahmie
Publisher: Spirit Bird Press, Santa Fe
Hardback with slipcover and addendum sheets
Condition: new - autographed
From the Jacket:
“The Picasso of the Southwest,” one collector calls Nampeyo (1856-1942), the great Hopi potter who created the Sikyatki Revival art movement in the late 19th century in northern Arizona. This book examines Nampeyo’s roots as a traditional potter and her early artistic development as seen in the collection of the British trader Thomas Keam. Assembled between 1875 and 1892, the Keam Collection, now at the Peabody Museum at Harvard University, is the earliest significant collection of Hopi pottery and contains many pieces by the young Nampeyo, previously unattributed to her. The book is profusely illustrated with historical photographs and examples of Nampeyo’s work. The argument develops by combining information gleaned from contemporary photographs and writings as well as Hopi oral history, and is informed by the author’s experience as an Indian trader at Hopi, and the insights of Nampeyo’s beginnings which were previously considered lost to history.
By combining 25 years of connoisseurship with academic research, the author has produced an important, in-depth reference book on Nampeyo which changes how we see this important American artist who created an immense body of work over seven decades in the American Southwest. By focusing upon Nampeyo’s beginnings, the author has laid a solid foundation for understanding Nampeyo’s unique creativity. The final chapter argues that Nampeyo is a Modernist artist and indeed deserves to stand with Picasso as a seminal artist of the time. This is a provocative book about our understating of art, gender, race, and genius….