Kachina Doll (Tam-lam Kushokta)
Arts of the Americas
Hide, cotton, pigment, fur, hair, yucca, wood, metal, wool
late 19th century
19 x 6 x 4 3/4in. (48.3 x 15.2 x 12.1cm)
Other: 19 x 6 x 4 3/4in. (48.3 x 15.2 x 12.1cm) (show scale)
Museum Expedition 1903, Museum Collection Fund
Wooden kachina with cotton kilt. (on right in photo) Torso is painted with red pigment. Hide red tongue protrudes from the mouth. The kachina carries a bundle of yucca whips in his hand. The head is adorned with feathers and the neck is surrounded by a fur collar.
This item is not on view
She-we-na (Zuni Pueblo). Kachina Doll (Tam-lam Kushokta), late 19th century. Hide, cotton, pigment, fur, hair, yucca, wood, metal, wool, 19 x 6 x 4 3/4in. (48.3 x 15.2 x 12.1cm). Brooklyn Museum, Museum Expedition 1903, Museum Collection Fund, 03.325.4653. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: , 03.325.4648_03.325.4653_SL1.jpg)
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I'm curious if these statues have significance as religious objects or were just artistic objects created to sell (since kachinas are usually worn as costumes ceremonially).
Kachina dolls are used to teach children about religion in Zuni and Hopi Pueblo Native American culture. Kachinas are thought to embody the spirit of a living thing and when called upon, they will evoke the power of whatever spirit they represented, such as an eagle. They are also represented by men in costume during ceremonies and sacred dances, so that's another aspect of them. The dolls are not considered sacred and are given to children and young women during ceremonies so that they may learn about the religion.
Awesome, thank you!