Thomas Natseway

Laguna Pueblo potter Thomas Natseway
Thomas Natseway

Thomas Natseway is a potter from Laguna Pueblo (born April 19, 1953). When he was working as a journalist in the early 1980s he interviewed Charmae Shields, a potter from Acoma Pueblo. They fell in love and were soon married. Thomas moved to Charmae's home at Acoma and learned to make pottery from his wife, Charmae, (b. 1958) and her mother, Ethel Shields, both well respected and award-winning Acoma potters.

Thomas began making his miniature creations in the early 1980s. His works range in size from one-quarter to three-quarters inch in height and diameter. Each vessel is made from Acoma clay dug from a deposit some distance from the pueblo. At first he was decorating his miniatures with traditional Acoma fine-line designs but after doing some research into old Mimbres, Anasazi, Hohokam, and Sikyatki (Hopi) motifs he got very interested in recreating those prehistoric designs. He also sometimes incorporates designs of contemporary pueblo pottery.

Awards Thomas has Won:

  • 1999 Santa Fe Indian Market 2nd Place
  • 1998 Santa Fe Indian Market 1st & 2nd Place
  • 1996 Santa Fe Indian Market (3) 2nd Place
  • 1995 Santa Fe Indian Market Best of Class
  • 1993 Santa Fe Indian Market 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place
  • 1992 Santa Fe Indian Market 2nd & (2) 3rd Place
  • 1991 Santa Fe Indian Market (2) 1st & (2) 2nd Place
  • 1989 Santa Fe Indian Market 1st & (2) 2nd Place
Miniature ram effigy bowl in black and white
Black and white miniature ram effigy bowl
3/4 in H by 1 1/4 in Dia
Stepped black and white design on a tiny lidded cylinder
Miniature lidded cylinder with stepped black and white design
3/4 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Polychrome bird effigy
Polychrome bird effigy
1/2 in H by 1 1/4 in Dia
Tiny polychrome wedding vase
Miniature polychrome wedding vase
3/4 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Parrot design on a miniature polychrome lidded jar
Miniature polychrome lidded jar with parrot design
3/4 in H by 1 in Dia
Butterfly design on a polychrome lidded jar
Polychrome lidded jar with butterfly design
3/4 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Lidded miniature tablita
Lidded miniature tablita
3/4 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Miniature corn maiden with a lid
Lidded miniature corn maiden
1 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Butterfly and geometric design on a miniature lidded jar
Miniature lidded jar with butterfly and geometric design
1 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Feather design and katsina headdress lid on a miniature jar
Miniature jar with feather design and katsina headdress lid
1 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Geometric design on a miniature black and white basket
Miniature black and white basket with geometric design
1/2 in H by 1 in Dia
Miniature circus figure
Polychrome miniature circus figure with a canteen
1 3/4 in H by 1 3/4 in Dia
Mimbres design on a miniature black and white bird bowl
Black and white miniature bird bowl decorated with Mimbres designs
3/4 in H by 1 3/4 in Dia
Bird, floral and geometric designs on a miniature polychrome wedding vase
Miniature polychrome wedding vase decorated with bird, floral and geometric design
3/4 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Mimiature polychrome parrot pitcher
Polychrome miniature parrot pitcher
3/4 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Swirl carved miniature red pitcher
Miniature red pitcher carved in a swirl design
3/4 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Tablita and geometric design on a lidded miniature jar
Miniature lidded jar with tablita and geometric design
1 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Geometric design on a miniature parrot pitcher
Miniature parrot pitcher with a geometric design
3/4 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Geometric design on a goat effigy bowl with feet
Goat effigy bowl with feet and geometric design
1/2 in H by 3/4 in Dia
Katsina faces on a miniature triangular jar
Miniature triangular jar decorated with katsina faces
3/4 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Floral, butterfly and geometric design on a miniature lidded polychrome jar
Miniature lidded polychrome jar decorated with a butterfly, floral and geometric design
1 1/4 in H by 1/2 in Dia
Geometric design on a miniature black and white jar
Black and white miniature ar decorated with a geometric design
3/4 in H by 1 1/2 in Dia
A cave with 4 miniature bears
4 miniature bears in a miniature cave
6 in H by 7 in Dia
Measurement of the cave
Shard and geometric design on a miniature triangular polychrome jar
Miniature triangular polychrome jar decorated with a shard geometric design
1/4 in H by 1 in Dia
Photos courtesy of Andrea Fisher Fine Pottery