Tewa Rain Dancers Kachina
A contemporary carving, hand made with the delicacy, grace and detail that this carver is known for.The artist used the natural form of the dead cottonwood root to inspire his design. Carved from a single piece, the Rain Dancers emerge one behind the other, slender and tall, as if reaching toward the clouds themselves. (Rain is a paramount good luck symbol, very important to the dry farmers of Hopi and Zuni Pueblos.) The dancers’ blankets and robes are suggested by a few, gracefully carved lines and billows in the unpainted, beautifully smooth wood. Victor also used the natural grain of the cottonwood for emphasis.The faces, hair, hands, and “turquoise, coral and shell” jewelry are finely detailed and painted. Equally meticulous work is shown in the lovely tapered, carved feathers that add to the verticality of the piece: both eagle and parrot feathers are exquisite. Notice the stepped rain-symbol earrings the top figure wears. as well as the bracelet and ring. The necklaces are carved and painted so realistically, we know at a glance what materials they represent. Both figures have the long hair that suggest rainfall; it starts out carved and seamlessly becomes just paint at the ends. At the base, the tawny wood is crisply carved into a swirled fan of pleats, like a fabric skirt. Decorative and meaningful symbols are also carved on the back: there is the surprise of a carved raincloud and rain motif, at the bottom of the upper figure, painted in primary colors, black and white. Attached to the artfully arranged hair of the upper figure is a raincloud-painted shield holding eagle and parrot feathers. Except for the parrot feathers, and the eagle feather on the top figure’s head, this kachina is entirely one piece. Stately and elegant, this splendid carving is also full of gentle movement, thanks to the artist’s manipulation of the wood. An exceptionally beautiful piece.
Width: 2 1/2″ Height: 16 1/8″ Depth: 2 1/2″