"The awesome figure of
the Monster Woman [Soyok Wuhti] appears during the Powamu ceremony
as one of the many Soyoko who threaten the lives of the children.
Dressed all in black, with long stragling hair, staring eyes
and a wide-fanged mouth, she carries a blood smeared knife and
a long jangling crook - a truely fearsome creature to the children.
When she speaks, it is in
a wailing falsetto or with a long dismal hoot of 'Soyoko'-u-u-u,'
from which her name is derived. She may reach for the children
with the long crook and threaten to put them in the basket on
her back, or to cut off their heads with the large knife that
she carries in her hand utterly terrifying her young audience.
On some mesas she may be the
ogre that threatens a small child who has been naughty and bargains
with a relative to ransom the child, but on others she is not.
In some villages she leads the procession of the ogres; in others
she remains at the side, content to make threatening gestures."
- Barton Wright, Kachinas: a Hopi Artist's
Oliver Tsinnie was born to
Dorothea Fritz and Orville Tsinnie in December, 1964. He was
born into the Hopi fire clan (also known as Masa) on his mothers
side and his father was Navajo. He has been carving since 1992
and credits his mother for convincing him to give carving a try.
He was completely self-taught. He remembers watching his Grandfather
and his uncles carving when he was very young. At that time he
says, they pieced the Kachinas together with nails and put fabric,fur
and leather on them for clothes and shoes. Oliver is married
to Marcella and they have 10 children between them.
Oliver carves one piece Kachinas
and has become a very fine carver. He uses quite a bit of motion
and his fine detail is excllent. His favorite Kachinas to carve
are the Ogre and the Deer.
Oliver has taken awards at
the Museum of Northern Arizona and Santa Fe at Indian Market.
He also won the SWAIA challenge award in 2000.