Jean Sahmie Biography
Jean Sahmie was born in 1948, into the famous Nampeyo potting family. Jean Sahmie/Sahme is Hopi/Tewa and the great-great-granddaughter of Nampeyo of Hano. She was given the Hopi name of Sak' Honsee (Tobacco Flower) and often signed her work that way.
She learned her potting skills from her mother, Priscilla Namingha Nampeyo, and her grandmother Rachel Namingha Nampeyo. In 1972 Jean began to take making art pottery seriously, encouraged by her grandmother to respect and follow traditional pottery methods and designs.
Jean is known for her expertly crafted shapes of canteens, bowls, jars, and cylinders. Her designs include migration patterns, moths, butterflies, birds, rain, cloud, feather, and prayer knot motifs—many based on old Sikyatki designs.
Jean was awarded Arizona Living Treasure in 2014. Her work resides in major museums, private collections, universities, and galleries in the United States and abroad.