Arizona Women Artists Active Before 1945: Painters, Sculptors, Potters, Printmakers, Illustrators, Quilters

By Lonnie Pierson Dunbier



Naha, Helen (1922, Tewa Village AZ-1993, Tewa Village AZ) Matriarch of Hopi-Tewa potters; did hand-coiled pottery inspired by fragments she found among Awatovi ruins. WIK
Naha, Paqua (1890, Tewa Village AZ-1955, Tewa Village AZ) Known as 'First Frog Woman'; active 1910 to 1955, created white-slipped pottery, a method continued by her Hopi-Tewa descendants. SAV, SCH
Nahoodyce, Mamie (1906, Tewa Village, AZ-1980, Tewa Village, AZ) Created black and red on yellow pottery bowls and worked with sister Patty Maho. SCH
Nampeyo of Hano (Old Lady) (1857/60, Tewa Village AZ-1942, Tewa Village AZ) Called 'Old Lady' because revived 'old' or former pottery methods and designs; made her 'world famous' among tourists; demonstrated at Grand Canyon Hopi House; elected to Arizona Women's Hall of Fame. AZL, KRA, SCH
Nampeyo, Annie Healing (1884, Tewa Village AZ-1968, Tewa Village AZ) Eldest child of Nampeyo of Hano and potter of black and white on red; was first of Nampeyo's children to attend a U.S. government school and speak English. KRA
Nampeyo, Beatrice Naha (1912, Tewa Village AZ-1942, Tewa Village AZ) Granddaughter of Nampeyo of Hano; did Hopi-Tewa pottery. SCH
Nampeyo, Daisy Hooee (1906, Tewa Village AZ-1994, Tewa Village AZ) Educated in Paris and California, married and lived on Zuni Reservation and then at Hopi, where her pottery reflected several cultures. AAB, SCH
Nampeyo, Fannie Polacca (1900, Tewa Village AZ-1987, Tewa Village AZ) Prolific potter, mother of seven, quilter and matriarch of Corn Clan; rubbed her fired pots with Vaseline burnished with old panty hose. ADO
Nampeyo, Nellie Douma (1896, Tewa Village AZ-1978, Tewa Village AZ) With mother, Nampeyo of Hano, was youngest potter at Grand Canyon Hopi House. Represented Hopi in 1910 at Chicago Industrial Expo. ADO
Nampeyo, Rachel Namingha (1901, Tewa Village AZ-1985, Tewa Village AZ) Granddaughter of Nampeyo of Hano and daughter of Annie Healing, did black and red on yellow jars and bowls and effigy bowls with maidenhead handles. SAV
Nampeyo, White Corn (1830, Hano AZ-1909, Hano AZ) Corn Clan potter of seed jars, cooking pots, and water jars; as mother and teacher of Nampeyo of Hano, was founder of Nampeyo pottery line. KRA, SCH
Navasie, Joy Naha (1919, Hopi AZ-) Daughter of Paqua Naha and Hopi-Tewa potter from mid 1930s, was called Second Frog Woman; known for white slip motif with rain, cloud, feathers and parrots. CAN, ADO, SAV
Neely, Margaret (Early 20th, AZ) Landscape painter, exhibited in 'Secondary Gallery' of 1927 State Fair. ASF   
 Nicholes, Fern Scott (1890, Utah-1973, Utah) A Flagstaff and Eagar resident in the 1920s and 30s, married to Ray Nicholes; was a public school teacher and artist; had two painting entries in 1933 Museum of Northern Arizona Exhibition: Arizona Artists Arts and Crafts. AAAC, ANC
Nicholson, Lillie Mae (1884, Aromas CA-1964, Oakland CA) California resident; spent several years in Japan; exhibited four oil paintings including Fishing Boats and Venice Italy in 1927 Arizona State Fair. ASF, HUG
Nimmo, Louise Everett (1899, Des Moines IA-1959, Ventura City, CA) By late 1920s was painting desert country of Arizona, especially giant Saguaros, which she painted so often her husband described them as her "cactus friends." Using maiden name of Louise Everett, exhibited oil painting, The Surging Sea, in 1927 Arizona State Fair. ASF, KOV
Noble, May (1878, Houston TX-1966, Phoenix AZ) In Phoenix by 1914, chaired Art Exhibition Committee of Women's Club of Phoenix, which oversaw State Fair art exhibitions; avoiding conflicts of interest, entered as 'non-competition' her own artwork in 1917 and 1920. In 1930s, chaired Arizona Committee for Public Works of Art Project. ASF, FAL, TRE
Norton, Louise Ruth (1888, Kansas City KS-1941, Tucson AZ) Raised on ranch near Prescott, became founder of Tucson Art Association; was painter of Pima Indian subjects and exhibition participant in 1928 and 1929 Arizona State Fairs; entered for six successive years Museum of Northern Arizona's exhibition, "Arizona Artists Arts and Crafts." AAAC, ASF, KOV
O'Connor, Helen (1905, Tempe AZ-1990, Tempe AZ) Lived mostly in Arizona but studied art in California and lived in New York City from 1930 to 1937; then settled in Tempe. Exhibited genre painting, A La Fiesta, and two works in 'Black and White' section of 1927 Arizona State Fair, and floral, figure and portrait subjects in 1928 Fair. ASF, HUG

O'Keeffe, Georgia Totto (1887, Sun Prairie WI-1986, Santa Fe NM) Early trip to Southwest from New York City included Grand Canyon and Canyon de Chelly where, circa 1937, friend and traveling companion, Ansel Adams, took her photo. ROW
Oldaker, Elizabeth Cordella Seargeant (1884, Marshall MO-1975, Phoenix AZ) Founder of Arizona Historical Society and elected to Arizona Women's Hall of Fame. In Arizona State Fair exhibited four paintings, 1916 and 1917 including San Francisco Peaks. In 1931 exhibited copper plate and enamel work with Arizona Artists Arts and Crafts exhibit. AAAC, ANC ASF, AZL
Oldaker, Mrs. Bessie (See Oldaker, Elizabeth Cordella Seargeant)
Oldaker, Mrs. Emery (See Oldaker, Elizabeth Cordella Seargeant)
O'Leary, Ruth G. (1907, Arizona-) Arizona born and married to Cornelius O'Leary, was artist and teacher in California by early 1930s, and by mid 1950s was listed in census records as a "clerk" in Pasadena. No record found of her returning to Arizona. ANC, HUG
Olson, Merle Fisk (1910, Woodruff AZ-1999, Bigfork MT) Lived in Woodruff and attended schools in Snowflake, Arizona from birth through high school; self taught, painted scenes of Grand Canyon, Navajo country and Superstition Mountains. By 1930s was in Texas, and then settled in Big Fork, Montana. AAB, KOV
Osgood, Virginia Mae (1899, High Sierra CA-San Diego, CA 1978) California artist and teacher; with still life and mining scene paintings, exhibited at 1927 and 1929 Arizona State Fair. ASF, HUG
Palmer, Pauline Lennards (1867, McHenry IL-1938, Trondheim NOR) An impressionist, was described in her obituary as "Chicago's Painter Lady"; entered oil figure painting, Bacchante, in 1927 Arizona State Fair. AAB, ASF
Parkinson, Frances Grace Wells (See Parkinson, Grace Well Jenkins)
Parkinson, Grace Wells Jenkins (1899-Prescott, AZ-1981, Los Angeles, CA) Arizona born sculptress and painter, did portrait bust of Amelia Earhart. Only tie to Arizona is birth as lived primarily in Santa Monica, California where married to prominent architect, Donald Parkinson. ANC, HUG, NAS
Patterson, Viola Hansen (1898, Seattle, WA-1984, Seattle WA) Abstract expressionist painter, printmaker, and educator at the University of Washington from 1947 to 1966, she had four 'Black and White' entries in 1928 Arizona State Fair. AAB, ANC, ASF, WIK
Pattison, Marylka Modjeska (See Modjeska, Marylka)

Pavatea, Garnet (1915, Tewa Village AZ-1981, Tewa Village AZ) Hopi-Tewa Spider Clan potter active beginning 1940; popularized 'punctate' design indentations. Won 139 ribbons at Museum of Northern Arizona Hopi Artist Exhibitions. ADO, SAV, SCH
Pawbe, TaTung (Early 19th, Hopi, AZ) A potter at Hano, the Tewa village adjacent to the Hopi Reservation, she was member of Hopi-Tewa Clan; was mother and teacher of Hall of Fame artist, Grace Chapella, FEL
Payne, Elsie Palmer (1884, San Antonio TX-1971, Minneapolis MN) From California, in 1917 had four months camping honeymoon in Canyon de Chelly with artist-husband, Edgar Payne. AAB
Peabody, Ruth Eaton Colburn (1893, Highland Park IL-1966, Laguna Beach CA) From studio in Laguna Beach, created abstract paintings and fountain sculptures; in 1925 and 1927 Arizona State Fairs entered still life and figure paintings. ASF, HUG
Peck, Anne Merriam Fite (1884, Piermont NY-1976, Tucson AZ) Illustrating the West with woodcuts and lithographs for Harper's magazine in early 20th century; later lived, taught and exhibited in Tucson, and wrote of "beautiful Arizona desert country." FAL

Peixotto, Irma Maduro (1881, New York City-1964, Beverly Hills CA), Painted early Arizona army life scenes, having been advised at the Art Students League in New York by guest teacher Frederic Remington to specialize in "horses and Indians." Wrote novels under the name of Crighton Sellars. AAB
Pelton, Agnes Lawrence (1881, Stuttgart GER-1961, Cathedral City CA) With sophisticated New York and Massachusetts art education, focused much of career on abstract, inner-life expression, but visits to Southwest including 1929 at the Grand Canyon inspired realism. AAB
Perry, Linda B. Welsich, (See Welisch, Linda B. Perry)
Petty, Jessie Woodward (1886, Navasota TX-1974, San Antonio TX) In 1930s lived in Douglas, Arizona with Army officer husband; painted landscape and mission scenes. FAL, KOV, POW
Peyton, Bertha Sophia Mentzler Dressler (1871, Chicago IL-1947, Boston MA) In 1903 was invited by Winfield Scott to Arizona; did painting, San Francisco Peaks, which became first painting acquired for Santa Fe Railroad Collection. Other added to Santa Fe Collection are Arizona Desert, 1907; At Close of Day and Grant Canyon, 1912; Arizona and Sunshine, 1918. DAW, KOV, STE
Phillips, Claire Dooner (See Dooner-Phillips, Claire)
Pierce, Lucy Valentine (1887, San Francisco CA-1974, La Jolla CA) From Monterey Peninsula and trained in Boston and San Francisco, exhibited figure painting, Marcella in the Garden in 1925 Arizona State Fair. ASF, HUG
Plotts, Anna J. (Early 20th, AZ) From Phoenix and Pinal County, Arizona and married to Frank Plotts, had painting entry, The Old Manse, listed as entry in 'Arizona Artists' section of 1929 Arizona State Fair. ANC, ASF
Plumleigh, Laura May (1909, NE-1982, Los Angeles CA) From Espanola, New Mexico and Flagstaff, Arizona, entered landscape paintings including Rancho de Taos and Trees in 1932 Fourth Annual Exhibition of "Arizona Artists Arts and Crafts." AAAC;
Pneuman, Mildred Arline Young (1899, Oskaloosa IA-1989, Redmond WA) Primarily interested in Colorado Rocky Mountains, in mid 1920s began painting in Arizona. Titles included Camelback and Papago, Phoenix; Late Afternoon, Tucson; and Superstition Mountain, Arizona. KOV
Pop Chalee, Merina Lujan (1908, Castle Rock UT-1993, Santa FE NM) Mural painter closely tied to New Mexico, had Phoenix radio show in 1940s where told many Indian legend stories. With husband member of Navajo tribe, Edward Lee Ntay, had ornamental art store in Scottsdale. AAB
Pottle, Theodora (1889, Chicago IL-1975 Macomb IL) From wealthy Illinois family, was a painter and art department chair at Western Illinois University. By 1928, had been both a student and art teacher in Tucson at University of Arizona. AAB
Qoyawayma, Polingazsi (See White, Elizabeth Ruth Qoyawayma)

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