Hopi pot with abstract Sikyatki bird design, by Nellie Nampeyo. According to an inscription on the bottom, this pot was “Given to Naomi White Bear by Nellie, October 6, 1971.” Nellie died in 1978. Thus, like 1992-09, this pot was given to the White Bears by its maker. In contrast to 1991-03, which Nellie also made, this pot shows a fineness of design and execution, although the design has rubbed off in places. Nellie’s design and execution tended toward “heavy.” The fineness of design on this pot is thus exceptional. People who knew Nellie collected her pots, according to Bruce McGee, because Nellie was such a “fine” and “sweet” person and her pottery incorporates this spirit.

Rick Dillingham examined pot 1993-02, agreed that it is an unusually finely drawn example of Nellie’s work, but noted that “typically” she had trouble having her paint adhere to the pot. However, the collection does contain one well-painted pot by Nellie (See 2010-04.) For a pot presumably formed by her mother and painted (and signed) by Nellie, see 2003-07. A Nellie pot in Rick’s collection is illustrated in Fourteen Families (Dillingham, 1994:59).

Purchase History:
Purchased on 5/14/93 from Rita Neal.