Morning Singer Figure
Unlike most Hopi potters, this artist prefers to make figures.
Even though they may depict traditional ceremonial figures, they are not kachinas, since they are formed from clay and not carved from cottonwood roots.
This figure, is the Morning Singer, wrapped in a blanket against the chill of dawn, and facing the sun to chant prayers for a balance of moisture and sun, so crops will thrive.
Behind his head are eagle feathers, thought to carry prayers up to the heavens; on his cheeks are rainclouds and rain.
The ruff around his neck is supposed to be made of pine or fir boughs, uniting nature in his persona.
The folds of the blanket, the suggestion of shoulders and neck, the combination of natural clay colors and textures – stone- polished blanket, incised feathers and ruff, matte finish to the painted parts – add liveliness to the essentially static figure.
There is a quiet strength about the piece.
He is powerful and serene at the same time, as befits a celestial being and a majestic little sculpture.