Galerie Flak - Press kit


KATSINA CALLING, Hopi ritual figures of Arizona, Ancient Arts of North America 
For hundreds of years, atop the mesas of Arizona, masked and costumed dancers have gathered week after week on the plaza - the large rectangular central square of the Hopi village - to pray for rain and germination. They represent Kachina spirits or 'katsina' (plural katsinam), a term signifying both wooden figurine, masked dancer, and deity. Objects of tradition and of education, tools to remember and works of art in their own right, katsina dolls give vibrant testimony to the traditions and secret beliefs of Native Americans of the Southwest...
Since the early 20th century, illustrious predecessors such as the Surrealists around André Breton or Max Ernst, as well as Claude Lévi-Strauss, André Malraux, or Jacques Lacan, have all fallen under the spell of these polychrome wooden dolls. In turn, these pioneers have passed on their passion to entire generations of collectors. Thus, katsinam have remained, since their discovery over a hundred years ago, an endless source of dreams, poetry, and inspiration...
20 years in the making, this exhibition entitled 'Katsina Calling' presents an exceptional collection of several dozen antique Katsina dolls dating from the 1880s to the 1930s...
Cross Crown, Four-Corner Cloud, Nahoile-chiwakopachoki Katsina doll, Hopi, Arizona, Carved cottonwood, natural pigments, Circa 1910s or earlier, H 32 cm, Ex collection George Everett Shaw, Colorado
BRAFA 2024 - Galerie Flak - Katsina Calling