Naha, Sylvia – Large Bowl with Lizard and Awatovi Shard Designs (1980s)
This large bowl is an exceptionally intricate piece by Sylvia Naha. She was a daughter of Helen “Featherwoman” Naha and a sister of Rainy and Burell Naha. She was known for her distinctive pieces painted with intricate designs on a white polished clay surface. Throughout the 1980’s, Sylvia was considered among the most innovative of the Hopi potters. Her pieces were classic in form and amazingly intricate in design. This bowl is a wide shape and half of the piece has a lizard and corn design. The other side is a series of pottery “shard” with designs from her various pottery designs. There are about 15 different designs including a batwing, Awatovi star, sun, and migration. Many of these are inspired by both her own pottery designs as well as those from her mother. What is really amazing, however, is the amount of fine-line painting! There are so many sections with small, fine lines and hatchwork patterns. Those are very time involved to paint, but very dramatic in appearance! The black on the painting is from Bee-Weed (a plant) and the red and other colors are natural clay slips. The jar is in very good condition with no chips, cracks, restoration or repair. The jar is signed on the bottom with a feather and an “S”. It is certainly an extraordinary piece by his exceptional Hopi-Tewa potter!