Category Archives: Kachina Dolls

SUN KACHINA PAINTING – Watercolor – A little SUN for everyone!

Hopi SUN Kachina 12-26-2013 WATERMARK


“The central theme of the kachina [religion] is the presence of life in all objects that fill the universe. Everything has an essence or a life force, and humans must interact with these or fail to survive.”

Kachinas are spirits or personifications of things in the real world. A kachina can represent anything in the natural world or cosmos, from a revered ancestor to an element, a location, a quality, a natural phenomenon, or a concept. There are more than 400 different kachinas in Hopi and Pueblo culture. The local pantheon of kachinas varies in each pueblo community; there may be kachinas for the sun, stars, thunderstorms, wind, corn, insects, and many other concepts. Kachinas are understood as having humanlike relationships; they may have uncles, sisters, and grandmothers, and may marry and have children. Although not worshipped, each is viewed as a powerful being who, if given veneration and respect, can use their particular power for human good, bringing rainfall, healing, fertility, or protection.

Kachina dancers, are masked members of the tribe who dress up as kachinas for religious ceremonies, and kachina dolls are given as gifts to children.  – Wikipedia

 SUN KACHINA or TAWA KACHINA – Tawa is a representation of the spirit of the sun.  The sun kachina has an important part in Hopi myth, as the sun god was one of the founders of the Earth and appears in a number of myths about creation. One myth explains sun god Tawa and the Earth goddess Kokyanwuhti were the only two beings that existed, with the former controlling the powers above and the latter in charge of the magic below. They created the Earth, to be in the middle of their two power zones, and all its inhabitants. 


Hopi Kachina Dolls 11-27-2013 WATERMARK


Nuvak’china – Snow Kachina

The Snow Kachina appears in many Hopi dances such as the Powamu, Kiva Dances, Water Serpent Ceremony & Mixed Kachina Dances.  He is very important on First Mesa.  Presumably he lives on top of the San Francisco Peaks and helps to bring the cold and the snows of winter to the Hopi.  He has a close tie with the water in the springs of the various villages as the snow is the main replenisher of the springs.  His image is often used by many non-indian businesses as an advertising device.

Talavai Kachina – Morning Singer Kachina

The Talvai Kachina is also called the Silent Kachina, although it sings.  It comes in pairs during the Bean Dance and stands to one side of the procession holding its small spruce tree and bell.  It wears the red and white maiden’s robe, which is characteristic garb for many kachinas that appear in the early morning.

Ka-e Kachina – Corn Dancer

This kachina is one of the many Corn Dancers and is one of the most popular both for dance and song as well as function.  He is a prayer for the fruition of corn and he can appear in almost every dance.  The symbolism on the face is widely variable as are the colors used.  His costume is more like that of the eastern pueblos.  Virtually all Corn Kachinas can be distinguished by the horizontally crossed feathers on their crowns.  There are numerous others that are corn dancers; Keme, from Laguna, and Yehoho, who wears a belt of roasted corn, as well as most of the Rugan Kachinas.

This watercolor painting was done for a very dear friend for her birthday.  She lives in Colorado and loves Kachina Dolls.  A colorful & happy painting for her to enjoy!