From acclaimed Hopi potter Tony Dallas comes a whimsical koshare figurine, created by hand from natural clay. The koshare is a traditional clown figure in Pueblo culture, serving as an entertainer, trickster and disciplinarian. Painted in vivid colors with commercial paint, Dallas’ beautifully molded koshare is shown in the traditional black and white horizontal stripes and carrying slices of watermelon. This koshare figurine is a fresh and playful representation of a beloved Pueblo art form from one of today’s most skilled pottery artists.
- Figurine handcrafted by Tony Dallas (Hopi)
- Natural clay with commercial paint
- Crafted through traditional horizontal coil and pinch methods
- Figurine measures 7-3/4” x 3-1/8” x 3-1/8”
- Comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity
Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care. For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.
Tony Dallas (b. 1956) is a Hopi artist who specializes in Storytellers and figurines. He was inspired to learn the art of pottery from his mother-in-law, Cochiti Pueblo potter Lucy R. Suina. Dallas is best known for his contemporary koshares, which he constructs from natural clay using traditional methods.
Hopi pottery is known around the world for its fineness and elegantly painted, fluid designs. Gold-hued pots made from clays found at First Mesa are perhaps best known, though Hopi potters also create beautiful red and white vessels. The modern era of Hopi pottery begins with Nampeyo, a potter who was inspired by ancient vessels uncovered at the ancestral site of Sikyatki in the late 19th century. Her work led to a revival of Sikyatki yellowware, which features brown or red designs painted on a buff-colored background. This color comes from a gray clay that turns light yellow-gold when fired. Hopi redware features black designs on a rich red-brown background, a color that comes from a yellow clay that turns red when fired. Hopi potters use a yucca leaf brush to paint both traditional and contemporary designs onto the surface of their pots, then fire in open pits using sheep manure or cedar as fuel. Today, Hopi artists produce some of the most exquisite handcrafted pots available, and their vessels are among the most collected art forms in Southwestern Native art.
Native American and Pueblo people of the Southwest have been making clay pottery figures since ancient times. Their creation was discouraged by Christian missionaries and the form was not widely practiced in the 16th-19th centuries. Figurative pottery was revived in the 20th century and clay figurines have since become one of the most popular and widely collected Native American art forms. Storytellers are a type of clay figure that is unique to the Southwest. They were developed by Helen Cordero of Cochiti Pueblo in 1963 and traditionally depict a male elder telling stories to children, all with open mouths. Cordero was inspired by the traditional “Singing Mother” figure often represented in clay, and by her grandfather, a legendary Cochiti storyteller. In Pueblo culture, stories are passed down orally from generation to generation, and the storyteller figure represents the importance of the storytelling tradition. Today, Native artists across the Southwest create storytellers, sometimes depicting the elder and children as clowns, drummers, acrobats, cowboys or animals, and handcrafted figurative pottery continues to be one of the most exciting, colorful and successful pottery forms.Read our Native American Pottery Collector's Guide.
At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we guarantee that your purchase is an original and authentic work handcrafted by Native American artists as defined by the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990. We ask our artists to complete an extensive certification process, providing a CIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood) card and other documentation of their Native American heritage. Our team of experts carefully inspects every product to guarantee it is handcrafted using traditional, sustainable processes and natural materials of only the highest quality. We record the place and date of each purchase and pride ourselves in paying a fair price that allows artists to make a living practicing their craft. At a time when many commercially-made products are being sold as handcrafted Native American art, our in-depth purchase process allows us to guarantee the authenticity of every unique piece of fine art we offer. For more than 35 years, we have made it a priority to visit artists in their studio or home to purchase their latest handcrafted pieces and learn about their work. We have developed lasting relationships with artists, as well as dealers and collectors, and we take pride in being a trusted destination for fine Native American art.