Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS


Support ANTIQUES ROADSHOW by supporting public television! Give Today
  • ON TV
  • SHOP
  • The Roadshow Archive

    Early 20th-Century Hopi Pottery Jar

    Appraised Value:

    $1,800 - $30,000

    Appraised on: July 28, 2007

    Appraised in: Louisville, Kentucky

    Appraised by: Linda Dyer

    Category: Tribal Arts

    Episode Info: Louisville, Hour 2 (#1214)

    Originally Aired: April 28, 2008

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 1  

    More Like This:

    Form: Jar
    Material: Pottery
    Period / Style: 20th Century
    Value Range: $1,800 - $30,000

    Related Links:

    Nampeyo: Grande Dame of Hopi Pottery
    Was this beautiful $3 pot made by a famous Hopi potter?

    Understanding Our Appraisals
    Useful tips to keep in mind when watching ANTIQUES ROADSHOW


    Appraisal Video: (2:55)


    Appraised By:

    Linda Dyer
    Tribal Arts
    Antiques Appraiser and Consultant,, Specialist, American Indian Art and Ethnographica

    Appraisal Transcript:

    GUEST: I was at a yard sale in northern Michigan and I paid three dollars for it.

    APPRAISER: What inspired you to buy it?

    GUEST: I'm really attracted to Native American materials-- pottery, rugs.

    APPRAISER: Well, this is one of those objects that's rich with potential. It is a Hopi pot. It's from a Southwestern pueblo. It's from the First Mesa. The distinction of Hopi pottery is that the clay, actually... it has a very wooden sound. It tends to be very porous and it tends to be very thick. And this has all of those attributes. And then the black mineral paint that's on here is quite lovely. Would you call that redware?

    APPRAISER: It is a redware. And it could be the work of the premier potter of the Hopi. Her name was Nampeyo. And she was born in the late 1800s, and around the 1900s, they were excavating below the mesa a early 1300s site called Sikyatki, and she became enamored and influenced by the designs of the shards of the pottery that they were finding at these excavations of her culture. So she began a revival of the Hopi pottery movement. This could be one of her works. It's typical of the time; it has the age, it has some of her famous attributes. This is actually a bear paw, and it was a very favored design element of Nampeyo. The interesting thing about Nampeyo, she was also considered one of the prettiest girls on the mesa. So, to our advantage, she was photographed a lot. So as her fame grew internationally as a potter, even more pictures were taken of her. So the process of determining if this is really her work will be aided by people who specialize in Nampeyo pottery. There's a really rich potential it could be, and that's because of the sensitivity of the design layout. It's somewhat of an awkward shape. As I turn it, you can see the way it lops. And they refer to these as seed jars. But also there's a sensibility to it that's very charming. I think if this was to come to auction and it's not a Nampeyo-- it's just a fine example of a Hopi pottery from the 1930s, '40s time period, possibly even the '20s-- it would have a value of probably about $1,800 to $2,000. Now, if we can prove that it's Nampeyo, at auction, she stands to bring anywhere from $10,000 to $30,000. Thank you for bringing this in today.

    GUEST: That would be wonderful.

    APPRAISER: It was delightful, and I hope it turns out for the very best.

    GUEST: Yes, thank you very much.

    WGBH This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2015 WGBH Educational Foundation.
    ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
    WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
    PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

    ROADSHOW on Facebook ROADSHOW Tweets ROADSHOW on YouTube