2005-12 Unfired Jar – Eagle-Tail/Swag Design

Object ID:
2005-12

Artist:
Vernida Polacca Nampeyo

Culture:
Hopi-Tewa

Dimensions:
3.44" h X 4.125" w

On 7/8/05, I stopped by Vernida’s home outside of Polacca to ask her if she had an unfired pot that I might purchase to help illustrate the process of creating Hopi pots. She did not have any completed unfired pots, but she did have two undecorated and unfired pots set aside because she had sanded them too long and created a hole in each pot. I showed her the photographs of Dorothy’s huge “Old Lady” Nampeyo pot and she suggested using that design on the unfinished pot. An hour and a half later, I returned to find her finishing the painting of the pot and (with her permission) took photographs of the process.

She had not seen the design before but she liked it, and said it “went on” the pot easily. Ironically, both the “Old Lady” original and this unfired copy each have a hole in the side. In July 2007, I visited Verna’s home again, gave her enlargements of photographs of the original Nampeyo pot, and spent time with her viewing her cornfield near the wash behind her home.