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Kachina Doll

Arts of the Americas

CULTURE Pueblo, Hopi
MEDIUM Cottonwood root, acrylic pigment, yarn, feathers, shell, hide, cotton, beads
DATES 1960-1970
DIMENSIONS 16 1/2 x 4 x 8 in. (41.9 x 10.2 x 20.3 cm)  (show scale)
SIGNATURE Signed on bottom of base: Henry Shelton Oraibi AZ
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CREDIT LINE Gift of Edith and Hershel Samuels
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CAPTION Henry Shelton (born 1929). Kachina Doll, 1960-1970. Cottonwood root, acrylic pigment, yarn, feathers, shell, hide, cotton, beads, 16 1/2 x 4 x 8 in. (41.9 x 10.2 x 20.3 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Edith and Hershel Samuels, 2010.6.9. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2010.6.9_front_PS2.jpg)
IMAGE front, 2010.6.9_front_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2009
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CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Heart of the Sky God (Sotuknangu) Kachina Doll. Or sometimes referred to as the Star Kachina (Sootukwnang) Master of the Universe. Either way it represents a deity. This is a deity impersonated by elders in certain kiva ceremonies. May also appear in Powamu, Mixed Dances of springtime. Believed to control the dangerous thunderheads, lightening and destructive rain. He wears a peaked hat (with feathers) that represents thunderheads. He holds a representation of the expandable sticks in his PL hand that represent lightening. The PR foot is slightly raised as well as his PR arm and the hand holds a gourd rattle with a four point star on it. He has yarn ties on his wrists and the top of the carved and painted brown boots. PR hand has a rattle His body painted blue, wears a traditional white kilt and sash with a carved fox tail in the back and a leather bandolier with shells crosses over his chest and back. His mask is helmet style with the front painted white and the back green. Black slits with rain drops over them for eyes, hourglass forms on his cheeks and a triangular mouth. The edge of his headdress is trimmed with ruffled yarn. The ears are large red disks with turquoise bead earring loops. This Kachina appears during the Angk'wa, night dances) usually with a mixed Kachina group. In the dance he carries a bull roarer and expandable sticks to make lightening when he dances.
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