FROM NAMPEYO OF HANO TO JAMES GARCIA - A Century of Hopi-Tewa Pottery
August 01, 2020 until August 31, 2020
Legendary Hopi matriarch Nampeyo of Hano used designs created by her prehistoric ancestors to bring Hopi pottery to the masses in the early 1900s. Today, Hopi potters like James Garcia use Nampeyo’s designs as inspiration for their new works. This exhibit, which features works by both of these potters and many others who produced between them, will showcase the ways that today’s artists continue to be influenced by those of yesteryear.
With this exhibit, we wish to shine a light on the link between New Mexico Pueblo Indians and the pottery being produced today at Hopi. The majority of the potters whose works we feature in this exhibit are Hopi-Tewa people—the descendants of those who migrated to Hopi from New Mexico’s Tano Pueblo in the 1690s.
The Pueblo Revolt of 1680 did not end the reign of the Spanish over the Pueblo peoples. The Walpi villagers, who were subject to constant harassment from the Spanish, visited Tano Pueblo in New Mexico to propose an alliance. The Tano people, who were suffering from Spanish harassment and a crippling lack of resources, joined forces with the Walpi, moving to a village atop First Mesa. The Walpi and Tano peoples were, together, better equipped to fight off invading Spanish settlers and nomadic Indian tribes. These Tano Indians, who originally lived just south of Santa Fe, became the Hopi-Tewa people: the world-renowned potters whose works we celebrate in this exhibit.
This interesting bit of history is worth mentioning because we, as residents of Santa Fe and collectors of Native American art, are fascinated by New Mexico and its Native inhabitants. Learning about the origins of their artworks is as great a joy as enjoying the artworks themselves. We proudly present this exhibit of pottery from the Hopi Mesas because, quite simply, we are drawn to the beauty of the artwork. The stories behind the artwork, even when filled with tension and conflict, are vital parts of this beauty. We want to celebrate the pottery’s past and present with the friends, clients, and colleagues who share so freely with us.
It is our pleasure to display pottery by members of the famous Nampeyo family. We have, of course, pottery by the matriarch of the family, Nampeyo of Hano. Additionally, we have selections by her three daughters—Annie Healing, Nellie Douma, and Fannie Polacca. In Annie’s descendants, we have represented her daughter, Rachel Namingha, Rachel’s daughter Dextra Quotskuyva and Rachel’s grandsons Steve Lucas and Les Namingha and her granddaughter, Rachel Sahmie. In Fannie’s family, we have represented her daughter Elva Tewaguna and Fannie’s grandson James Garcia. We have no family members of Nellie Douma represented. There were few potters in her family.
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