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Hopi Pottery


The Hopi are renowned for their pottery and are especially recognized for elegantly decorated, gold-hued pots made from clays found at First Mesa. Pots with white and red, slip-glazed backgrounds decorated with similarly intricate designs are also produced by the Hopi. All three types—gold, red, and white—bear fluid, geometric designs executed in red and/or black. Originally, pots with all three backgrounds were produced; but, after roughly 1300, pottery with a white background was made due to a switch from a reduced-oxygen wood-firing process to coal firing, which relies on an oxygen-rich firing environment.

In all aspects of Hopi ritual, ideas of space, time, color, and number are all interrelated in such a way as to provide order to the Hopi world. This is true for Hopi pottery making.It has been suggested that the golden yellow Hopi pottery may have been the inspiration for tales of wealth which lured the early Spaniards to the Seven Cities of Cibola, since to people who did not refine precious metals, gold could have referred to the color.

Francisco Porras and two other padres came to the Hopi villages to stay, marking the beginning of the Mission period which brought many changes in Hopi life and even influenced the pottery in the half-century of its duration.

Eunice Fawn Navasie, Frog bowl

6 3/4" high x 8 1/2" wide


Eunice "First Fawn" Navasie was born in 1920 and was from Sichomovi on First Mesa on the Hopi Reservation in northern Arizona. She learned the art of pottery making from her mother Agnes and was active making pottery from 1940- 1990. She was the sister-in-law of noted potter Joy Navasie (Second Frog Woman) and the mother of potters Dawn Navasie, Dolly Joe (known as White Swan), and Fawn Garcia Navasie (formerly "Little Fawn"). She died in 1992.

This pot was purchased the day following Fawn's death. It is from her last firing. (certificate of registration and appraisal included).

The design is curvelinear/linrer adaptation of the traditionalSiyatki Peublo (Kiva) motifs. The bowl has four 1" up set frogs Sculpted and painted w/slip above the bowls shoulder.  This bowl is a one of a kind and perfect in every way.


Price: SOLD


Nampeyo: Grande Dame of Hopi Pottery

2 1/2" tall x 8" wide


Nampeyo, whose Hopi name means "snake that does not bite," and who was given the Anglo first name Iris, was born in about 1860. She learned the craft of pottery as a girl from her grandmother. When the photographer Willliam Henry Jackson visited the Hopi mesa in 1875, he happened to take photographs of the 15-year-old Nampeyo, who lived on the First Mesa in the village of Hano, in the Arizona Hopi Reservation.

Nampeyo was a recognized potter by the time she was 20. Her pots became prized by Anglo traders, and the young Nampeyo almost certainly sold her work through Keams Canyon, the first Hopi trading post, established on the Hopi Reservation in 1875, the same year that Jackson photographed Nampeyo.

This piece was sold to me by David Cook Gallery, it has been authenticated by her daughter Annie.  Very nice piece, in great shape with no chips or cracks or restoration.

Price: $8000.00 SOLD


Neva Nampeyo – Migration pattern bowl


Neva Nampeyo was a daughter of Elva Nampeyo and a great granddaughter of Nampeyo of Hano.   She was not a prolific potter and her work was always tightly painted and traditional in imagery. This bowl is an exceptional piece of her pottery. The design is a migration pattern and the entire bowl is fully painted. The black is bee-weed (a plant) and the red is an additional clay slip.  The bowl has been traditionally fired so there are color variations to the clay.  It is in excellent good condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair. This is an exceptional piece.

Price: $400.00


Loren Ami, stylized birds

7" tall x 5"wide


Loren Ami has been an active potter since 1990. His grandmother was Eleanor Ami, and he was taught to make pottery by DEXTRA. He was raised in Santa Fe, away from Hopiland.

 During his senior year in high school, he and his mom moved back to Hopi. Loren paints with old, Sikyatki designs, and is especially known for his fine polychrome canteens, wedding vases, and bowls. The shape of this wedding vase is just right.

 Well proportioned, and beautifully painted, it is a lovely piece. Look at the use of fire clouding that he achieves in his firing. A warm glow surrounds the entire wedding vase.

Price: $1500.00  SOLD


Steve Lucas, Butterfly 

4" tall x 5 1/2" wide


Steve Lucas, Hopi potter, has emerged as one of the premier artists from the Nampeyo family. He has consistently won blue ribbons at the most prestigious shows in the pottery field, Santa Fe Indian Market and Gallup Ceremonial, just to name two of the most illustrious shows.

Steve Lucas has the Hopi name of Koyemsi, Hopi-Tewa for the mudhead clown, the clan to which he belongs on Hopi First Mesa. This name and the mudhead logo appear on the base of each of Steve's pots. You will find, simultaneously, the corn logo, symbol of the Corn clan, the clan of Nampeyo, Steve's great, great-grandmother.

Steve uses all natural clays to hand coil his pottery, natural pigments to create designs and outdoor firing to give his art the wonderful blush that adds much so beauty.

Another characteristic of Steve's fine work is the high polished glow which most pieces exhibit. This is achieved through many hours of diligent polishing using a small, smooth stone.

Most of his designs are based on old Sikyatki shards that he studies for inspiration. Steve's work is precise, finely detailed, nearly perfect in symmetry.

This bowl by Steve is fantastic and so different from his usual work.  The polish is unbelivable and such a warm color.

Price: SOLD


Charles Navasie, stylized birds

8" wide x 3" high


Born in 1965 into the Parrot Clan of the Hopi-Tewa, Charles Navasie is the great grandson of Paqua Naha (the first Frogwoman) and grandson of Joy Navasie (the second Frogwoman). His mother, Loretta Navasie is also a well-known potter but at the age of 15, he began learning the fundamentals of traditional pottery making from his grandmother Joy.

Charles works with traditional Hopi tanware and the Navasie family trademark whiteware - whiteware being acknowledged as the hardest type of clay to work with.

What a beaitiful piece, the bird design is just so traditional, and the almost mauve color is so beautiful.

Price: $1700.00 SOLD


Al Qoyawayma, Kokopelli

12 1/2" x 12 1/2"


Al Qoyawayma was born on February 26, 1938 at Third Mesa at Hopi. He was born into the Coyote Clan, a descendant of the famous potters of Sikyatki. As much as he learned pottery-making in the traditional way from his aunt, Polingaysi Qoyawayma, his background in engineering is reflected in his pottery and the delicate forms he is able to achieve with it. Al's pottery is created in two distinct styles: one of figurative sculpted reliefs and another of carved and incised polychrome influenced by patterns used hundreds of years ago in the village of Sikyatki. Al has been producing pottery for more than 20 years and his pieces reflect his journey tracing his Hopi roots back to a village in Ecuador about 4,000 years ago.  All Al Q’s work in clay is built in the traditional method of coiling. He stretches his clay - creating that overall effect of elegance and fluidity. He creates architectural type designs in clay - Corn Maidens, Kokopelli, Mesas, and butterflies - all in relief work.

In his artist's statement Al Q says." "By Grace my Creator gives me everlasting hope. My clay gives me an artist's life. The spirit of my work reflects the soft hues, shadows and forms of the high desert. The life of my work has its roots in a timeless culture, the mystery of our origins, and the links to Mesoamerica and beyond."

This bowl is inspired by the pre-historic Sikyatki pottery, which has a wide, flat shoulder. Al has made this piece with a beautiful mauve colored clay!

This bowl is inspired by the pre-historic Sikyatki pottery, which has a wide, flat shoulder. Al has made this piece with a beautiful mauve colored clay! It has 4 large Kokopelli surrounding the base of this incredible lovely piece.  This is a must for any ones collection

Price: $13,000 SOLD


Rondina Huma, shard pot

9" wide x 6" high


Rondina Huma has certainly been one of the most influential Hopi potters working today.  Since her “Best of Show” award at Santa Fe Indian Market in the early 1990′s, her tight style and intricately painted pottery has changed the face of contemporary Hopi pottery.   Each piece is coil built, fully stone polished and painted with native clays and bee-weed (black), and native fired.  It is fully painted on the outside and also polished on the inside!  There is an “eternity band” design around the rim which is painted in alternating colors of red, burgundy and black. In the middle of the bowl the band is the mountain design and the remainder of the bowl is fully designed with classic Hopi imagery in small panels.  The red areas in the are stone polished while the burgundy triangular areas are matte.  The color from the firing is stunning on this bowl!  Rondina says that she tries to not duplicate the same “shard” patterns on the same vessel!  The tight patterns have become more and more intricate and detailed in each passing year. This bowl has the smallest, tightest patterns I have ever seen Rondina paint.  Amazing!

Price: $11,000.00  SOLD


Dextra Nampeyo

6' x 6"


Few potters have had the impact on their art as Dextra Nampeyo. She is a great-granddaughter of Nampeyo of Hano, descending through her eldest daughter, Annie Healing. For almost forty years she has been one of the most creative, innovative and influential potters at Hopi. She is also the mother of famed painted Dan Namingha and potter Hisi Quotskuyva. She taught Steve Lucas, Loren Ami, Yvonne Lucas and Les Namingha to make pottery, resulting in a nearly unprecedented influence in Hopi pottery. Dextra continues to use bee-weed plant for the black and native clay slips for the red. Dextra's pottery can be found in the permanent collection of numerous museums and has been the subject of a book and exhibition at the Wheelwright Museum, entitled, "Painted Perfection".

If one examines the fine lines in the bear paw designs on this seed jar, it will be quite evident that they could not be finer. I do not believe a sharpened lead pencil could make finer lines. When one realizes that these lines were made with a paint brush fashioned from the leaf of a yucca plant, then it becomes obvious just how talented a potter Dextra is.

The overall execution of the painted design on this jar is beyond exceptional as is the construction of the vessel itself. The seed pot is perfectly balanced and the walls are as thin as one could achieve. The burnishing of the all-natural clay is perfect and the firing produced just enough orange glow to soften the tan colored slip.

Overall, the jar is as perfect as a potter could make.

Price: $6,000.00  SOLD


Preston Duwyenie, Earth in balance


Born in 1951, Preston Duwyenie is a Hopi potter from the village of Hotevilla on Third Mesa. He attended elementary and middle school at Hotevilla, then went to High School in Scottsdale, AZ. After graduating he studied under Otellie Loloma at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. Later he obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Colorado State University and completed coursework toward an MFA there. Then he accepted a position teaching modern ceramics at the Institute for American indian Arts in Santa Fe and that's where he met his wife Debra DuwyenieHe no longer teaches but he lives at Santa Clara Pueblo and still produces pottery and silverwork, sometimes combining the two with silver pieces embedded in his pottery.

 This is a beautiful piece and a rare find of Prestons. Polished buff/tan jar with organic opening, raised ring and textured upper surface. Preston calls this piece "Earth in Balance", what an elegant piece.


Price: SOLD


Mark Tahbo, Plainware (not so plain though)

5 1/2" tall x 6" wide


Mark Tahbo is well known for his traditional style pottery and amazing blushes on the fired surface.  His work is featured in nearly every major gallery and museum featuring Pueblo pottery. He appears in Gregory Schaff's publication, Hopi-Tewa Pottery: 500 Artist Biographies (p. 158), as well as Rick Dillingham's Fourteen Families in Pueblo Pottery (p. 8), and Jerry & Lois Jacka's Art of the Hopi (p. 70).

He has taken numerous ribbons, including first place and best of show, at major venues like the Santa Fe Indian Market and the Heard Museum's Annual Indian

This jar is from 2000 and it has a wide shoulder and a slightly turned out rim.  

Another great example of Mark's purity pieces - what he calls his plainware.  There is an elegance to this finely slipped and stone-polished pottery vase by talented Hopi potter Mark Tahbo. The form is so pleasing that he decided not to add painted motifs. It is so pleasing to the eye and touch, so relaxing. The polish is one of the finest!


Price: $1500.00 SOLD


Joy Navasie, Frog Woman

5" high x 6" wide


Joy Navasie was born in 1919 in Arizona, although she claims to "have three birthdays, 1916 and 1918 also".   Her given Hopi-Tewa name is Yellow Flower.   Joy is the only daughter of famed Hopi-Tewa potter Paqua Naha.   Naha, known as the original Frog Woman because she signed her pots with a frog drawing, is credited with being the first Hopi-Tewa potter to make white slipped pottery. 

Joy began making pottery while in her late teens.  After a few years she began signing her pottery with the frog symbol also.  To distinguish her symbol from her mother's frog, which was drawn with toes, Joy Navasie drew her frog with webbed feet. In the early 1950's, a few years before her death, Paqua Naha began developing white slipped pottery.  Joy decided to continue the tradition.

This is a striking jar by Joy Navasie.  It is slipped with the white clay and then painted with natural clay slips and bee-weed (black).  The shape is beautiful design by Joy .  There is a band of design painted around the neck with plant and rain designs.  Around the body of the jar there are four sections of designs with stylized bird motifs.  The designs are complex and yet have a variety of imagery in each section.  The jar is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair. The jar is signed on the bottom with her Frog Hallmark.  

Price: $1500.00


Steve Lucas, Sikyatki design

4" tall x 8" wide


Steve Lucas is one of the truly exceptional Hopi-Tewa potters working today.  His pottery is all coil built, intricately painted with bee-weed (black) and highlighted with white and red clay slips. The red is distinctive as it is stone polished and contains small bits of mica which reflect the light.  Each piece is traditionally fired.  Steve is renown for his use of traditional Hopi and Sikyatki designs, but has taken them a step forward, reworking the patterns into new and more complex designs.  This bowl has a wide shoulder and the design is painted on the top.  It has two Sikyatki style birds encircling the piece.  Steve has used red clay “brush strokes” on the surface to give the piece a more painterly fell, but also to create a sense of motion for the birds!  The bottom is fully polished with a red clay slip.  It is signed on the bottom with his name and an ear of corn (Corn Clan) and a Mudhead Katsina.  This piece is one of the nicest ones I have seen by Steve.  It is so beautiful and full of tradition.

Price: SOLD


Mark Tahbo, Parrot Plate

8 3/4" wide


Mark Tahbo is a Hopi-Tewa and a member of the Tobacco Clan.  He has been an active potter since 1978.  He comes from a long line of outstanding potters, the most famous of whom was his great-grandmother Grace Chapella.  He is also the grandson of her daughter Alma Tahbo.  His siblings are potters too.  Grace Chapella, of course, is famous for living to 106 years and continuing to make pottery past her 100th birthday.

 Mark makes extremely thin-walled vessels and polishes them to perfection. His designs are executed with precision.  Because of his fine workmanship, he has received numerous awards at the Heard Museum Annual Indian Fair.  He also has been a consistent award winner at the annual Santa Fe Indian Market.  In 1991, he won Overall Prize at Indian Market.  In 1992 he was awarded Best of Division at the Heard Museum Indian Fair. Awards continued to be presented to him in 1993 and 1994 and later.

I asked Mark to make a plate for me, (I love plates), but of course to add his own wonderful artistry. What a beautiful piece, perfection in every way.  Mark does not usually make plates so this is rare and very special! This is a must for plate collectors, for sure. I just love this plate!

Mark Tahbo passed away at 59, December 2017.  He will be missed!


Price: SOLD


Karen Abeita, eagle tail

3 1/2" tall x 8 1/2" wide


Karen Abeita was born of a Tewa mother and Isleta father. She is one of the finest young Hopi potters working today. She particularly likes using some of the older designs on her pots -the Palhik Mana - (Butterfly Maiden) pottery sherds, feathers, eagle tail feather skirt, clouds, and song birds. Karen works particularly hard on her outdoor firing techniques - aiming to have a certain warm glow with the use of fire clouds. Her work is some of the very finest produced at Hopi today. Her use of fire clouds to produce soft changes in hue in her works creates an exceptionally rich and warm design. All of Karen's pottery is completely traditional from gathering the clay from the Hopi Reservation to hand coiling, hand polishing , hand painting than firing the old fashioned way – outdoors. Karen has won numerous awards – including Best of Show, "Invitational," Lawrence, KS. She is in all the major books recently published on Hopi pottery, including Gregory Schaaf's book Hopi–Tewa Pottery 500 Artist Biographies. She has signed with her name "Karen Abeita" and her parrot clan hallmark.

Price: SOLD