Quotskuyva, Dextra – Bowl with Double Sikyatki Bird and Water Designs (1984)

6"w x 4"h

$ 4,400.00

Dextra Quostkuyva Nampeyo was certainly one of the most influential Hopi-Tewa potters of the last 50 years. Not only did she teach numerous potters (Steve Lucas, Yvonne Lucas, Les Namingha, Loren Ami, Hisi Nampeyo, to name just a few), but her creative designs and forms have dramatically influenced the pottery itself.  This bowl is from 1984.  It is thin-walled and coil-built.  The top half of the bowl is stone polished while the bottom half is matte. The top has an oval opening.  There are Sikyatki-inspired birds on each side.  Each is tightly painted with thin lines and polished red areas on the wings and tail.  The beaks of each bird are dipping into the water pouring out from the opening on the jar.  The opening has water designs and mottled red clay areas meant to represent the water as well.  It is a striking and creative piece of her pottery during her early innovative period.  There is creative sophistication to the piece, much like in that of her ancestor Nampeyo of Hano.  The bowl was traditionally fired, creating strong blushes on the surface. This bowl is signed on the bottom, “Dextra” and an ear of corn for Corn Clan.  It is in excellent condition with no chips, cracks, restoration, or repair.  Definitely a classic of her creative clay art!

Dextra said of her early pottery:

“I was watching my mom (Rachel Nampeyo) all the time, and I was picking up everything she was doing. I found my own polishing stones. I would collect clays.  My mother didn’t like it when I did different types of designs. She was different in her ideas. My mother, she went so far as to say that whatever our great-grandmother had reproduced from old designs—those were important designs. We’re supposed to have the basics, she’d say. The big six. Don’t part from that. The six traditional designs. One of them is the migration design, the eagle feather design, the hummingbird design, the horned lizard, the moth design, and parrots. Those are the ones that started with Lesso and Nampeyo.  The designs are mainly from Sikyatki people—it was their pottery that was dug out when they were excavating. They were beautiful designs they had used quite a bit.”  Dextra Quotskuyva, Spoken Through Clay