K is for Kachina

Helbing Collection A-Z is a continuing feature of our blog. Each week for 26 weeks, I will highlight an item or items from our Helbing Collection of Native American Arts and Crafts.

This week we are featuring the Eagle Dance Kachina Doll. According to wikipedia  Hopi Kachina Dolls are effigies made of cottonwood that embody the characteristics of the ceremonial Kachina, the masked spirits of the Hopi Native American tribe. According to the Hopi, Kachina dolls are objects meant to be treasured and studied, and are not to be considered idols of worship or children’s toys.

This doll is 11″ tall and 17″ wide. The eagle mask has yellow and black beak, aqua face, and red ears. The figure is painted with a yellow and black shirt and a beige skirt with green, red, and black design. The outstretched wings are black. It has yellow leggings and aqua & red moccasins. There are 4 feathers around the lower edge of the mask, 2 wrapped feathers on top and 3 bigger feathers on the back. The back has an aqua rectangle with red, yellow and blue circles.

The only information Cleora left us about this doll is that it was a gift from Dr. and Mrs. R. M. Tisinger of Jackson, Virginia.

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