Specializing in Native American Crafts Since 1916

Nyla Nampeyo-Sahmie


Artist Profile

Nyla “Nampeyo” Sahmie, member of the Corn Clan, was born in 1954 into the Hopi Reservation. She was taught the art of constructing Hopi pottery using ancient traditional methods passed down to her from her mother, Priscilla Namingha-Nampeyo. Nyla began experimenting with pottery at the age of 13. She has continued this long lived tradition just like her ancestors have before her. Her goal is to become one of the finest potters ever just like the famed Nampeyo. Nyla is a fifth generation of Nampeyo potters currently working with clay.

Nyla specializes in hand coiled yellow-orange traditional pottery. Her favorite patterns to paint include migrations, double hummingbirds and flowers. She recently has begun hand coiling very large olla pots. “Making pottery has come naturally to me and I am honored to be a member of one of the most famous Native American family names,” Nyla said. She signs her pottery: Nyla Nampeyo followed by a corn symbol to denote her clan origin.

Nyla currently works with children at local elementary and high schools in her area to educate the youth about the Hopi heritage and culture. She does this so the tradition of the Hopi ways of life are continued and not forgotten.

Recent Work by Nyla Nampeyo-Sahmie

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