Also called "cradle dolls' because they are given to Hopi infants, Putsqatihut or flat dolls are the very oldest form of katsinas dolls among the Hopi. After a child has gone through his or her naming ceremony 20 days after birth, the first one received is the Hahay'i wuuhti or katsina grandmother. The next is the katsinmana or katsina maiden. After that they may receive any katsina doll. The katsinas themselves carve them for the young girls who continue to receive them (usually more fully formed and detailed ones as they grow older) until they are initiated into the Hopi Katsina Society.
A Cactus katsina by William Gashweseoma. 8.75 inches high. $60 The Talavai’i (Early Morning) is also by William. 8.25 inches high and $60. Max Curley’s Stone Eater (Owangaroro) is SOLD (ALL IN SANTA FE)
Left to right: Taawa or Sun Katsina by Ferris “Spike” Satala, ~7.5 inches including feathers. $40. Spike also made the Pöökhonghoya or Warrior Twin, 9 inches to feather tip and SOLD. The Yot.se’e is by Cory Ahonewa, it is just under 9 inches high to feather tips and $$68. (ALL IN SANTA FE) Click for larger images.
A Sio Hu’katsina by William Gashweseoma. 14 inches high and $110. (SANTA FE)
A Maahkvaho or Hunter katsina by William Gashweseoma. 12 inches tall and $110. (SANTA FE)
A Mastok katsina by Clark Tenahongva, who was among the first to revive the old style katsina dolls. He is currently the Hopi tribe’s vice-chair, has several CDs of his music out and is featured in Walsh’s new book, The Great Tradition of Hopi Katsina Carvers. 16 in hes tall. $200.
Named for a type of fly, this katsina often carries a Hopi throwing stick, used in hunting rabbits. The dots on the mask represent the constellations we know as the Big Dipper and the Pleiades. The katsina appears in pairs at the beginning of the katsina year as a part of a ritual designed to insure fertility – specifically the continuation or renewal of the life cycle.