Hopi Old Version of Yellow Fox Piggyback Katsina Doll [SOLD]


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Carver Unknown

This Hopi katsina doll carving presents to us an old version of the Yellow Fox Katsina. In this instance, we see a piggyback smaller Fox Katsina hiking a ride. The older version of katsina representations were simpler in execution. The mouth here was simply painted on the face rather than adding an elongated snout as seen in more recent carvings. Similarly, the eyes are simple black painted circles rather than the bulging ones seen on later carvings. The body dots on the wrists and ankles of later carvings are represented here by black dots over the body.

The Fox Katsina may appear in the Soyohim dances, but most often he appears as a runner. He dresses in the minimum of clothing so that he may run more rapidly. The carver, likely an older man, did an excellent job of carving this figure in a simplified manner. This is typical of katsina dolls of the early twentieth century, up to the early 1940s.

When the weather warms and the Ankwati or Anktioni Dances draw to a close, katsina dances are held in the plaza of the village. These dances may be either Mixed Katsina Dances (Soyohim) where all of the dancers are different types of katsinas, or they may be a dance where all the katsinas are the same—the Regular or Line Dance.

These dances may be sponsored by people who wish to commemorate some special event such as the return of a son from military service, the recovery from an illness, or a child's birthday. While there is a strong element of religion present in these dances, there is also an equally strong element of entertainment. Each of the katsinas presented in one of these dances has a definite purpose, often in addition to their primary purpose of bringing rain and fertility.

Perhaps this katsina is acting in a humorous manner by letting a smaller katsina ride piggyback.

Condition: good condition with minor paint abrasions

Provenance: this Hopi Old Version of Yellow Fox Piggyback Katsina Doll is from the collection of a client of Adobe Gallery

Reference: KACHINAS A Hopi Artist's Documentary by Barton Wright with Original Paintings by Cliff Bahnimptewa

TAGS: Katsina DollsHopi PuebloHopi Kachina Dolls

A close-up view of the two FOX Katsina dolls riding attached.

Carver Unknown
C4784P-fox.jpgC4784P-large.jpg Click on image to view larger.