or Crow Mother, as she is called, "is a figure of great
dignity. She appears on all three mesas, usually in connection
with the initiation of the children, although she also appears
on other occassions.
At the initiation rites she
descends into the kiva bearing a large number of yucca blades
bound together at the base. She takes a position at one corner
of the large sand painting on the floor of the kiva, with one
of her "sons" on either side of her.
As the candidate is brought
to the sand painting she hands a whip to one of the Hu' Kachinas
who gives the child four healthy strokes with the yucca blade.
When the yucca becomes worn it is handed back to the Crow Mother
who then supplies a new one.
When the initiatory whipping
is over, she raises her skirts and receives the same treatment
accorded the children. They are given prayer feathers and meal
and leave the kiva."
- Barton Wright, Kachinas: a Hopi Artist's
This Kachina was carved by
Kevin Pochoema, who is dedicated to perfection and maintaining
the traditional Hopi culture through his Kachinas. Kevin is recognized
as one of the great Kachina doll carvers of his time. He is 34
years old and has been seriously carving since he was 15. His
family is from the village of Paaqavi.
Kevin has an incredible ability
to transform his dolls, it's almost as if the spectators are
watching the Kachinas themselves. Kevin says: "I want to
make my dolls flow...I like to show scenes that relate to the
Kachina doll I'm carving." Kevin achieves this through natural
looking movement and costuming. He is a master at elaborate detail
and superior finish, which sets his work apart from other carvers.
Kevin is an expert at the
use of oil-based paints and pigments. The allows him to create
subtle variations and concentrations of color to enhance the
very strong sense of reality. It takes much experimentation to
get his color palette just right. Kevin has carved this figure
out of a single piece of cottonwood root.
Kevin Pochoema is featured
on the cover of Art of the Hopi by Lois & Jerry Jacka and
on page 67. He is also well represented in Kent McManis new book
Hopi Katsina Dolls on many pages throughout the book. In it,
Kevin states: "I keep trying to improve so I won't carve
'just another doll'."