Katsinas are spirit beings who are the intermediaries between the Hopi and their deities, carrying the prayers of the Hopis for the continuation of the cycle of life of all living things. They may represent the spirit of plants, animals, forces of natures, places or even other tribes. Some are known for their duties (eg: guard, clown...) and not all names are translatable. They appear in the plazas for Hopi villages for approximately 6 months of the year as they dwell in the katsina or spirit world for the other half of the year.
They are carved from the root of the cottonwood tree - used because the cottonwood grows only where there is an ample and consistent supply of water - rare around the Hopi mesas - and because of the water-seeking nature of the roots, which can grow out and down a couple hundred feet or more in search of the water table. If you are interested in learning more, there are several books we can recommend to you (which we also sell).
Between our Santa Fe and Tucson stores we generally have somewhere between 300 and 400 katsinas so on our website we can only hope to show you a cross-section. Please contact us if you are looking for something specific that you do not see. We may have it or be able to acquire it for you.
For each katsina we sell, we provide an information sheet similar to the ones above.
The Hemis at left is 18 inches high and sold. The Moosa has been sold
Two dolls by Brandon Kayquoptewa A Totsa/Hummingbird, 9 inches high and $270 and a Hospow/Roadrunner 10 inches high. $270. A Koshare by Nick Brokeshoulder. 16.5 inches high and $250. (SANTA FE)
A wonderful Sooyok Wuuhti by Justice "Juice" Tso who appears to be hauling off a misbehaving young clown to eat. A warning to children of the importance of behaving well. 11 inches high and $400. Talavay or Early Morning Katsina by Darwyn Puhuyaouama. 13.25 inches high and $300. ON HOLD (SANTA FE)
A Sotuknagw by Lenno Polingyumptewa. 14.25 inches high to feather tip and $475. (SANTA FE)
Tuneililli is one of several Hopi katsinas based upon a Navajo yei’ii, this one being a yei’i whose name is translated as Grey God or Water Sprinkler. It takes its name from the Navajo word Toh naliini meaning “falling water”. At Zuni he is called Pasikiapa Mosona. Carved by Brandon Kayquoptewa.8 inches high. (SANTA FE)
Above is a Kwaamana or Eagle Maiden by Carl Nequatewa. 12 inches high. $200. (SANTA FE)
The Patzro - one of the tsiro or bird katsinas is by Nick Brokeshoulder, $250. The Hakto (spirit of the forest) was carved by Ryan Gashweseoma. 10.5 inches high. $350. A Taawa or Sun katsina by Lenno Polingyumptewa. 13.5 inches high to feather tips and $475. (ALL IN SANTA FE)
A Kwaakatsina (Eagle katsina, by Sonny Secklestewa. 16 inch wingspan. 15 inches high. $360. (SANTA FE)
Ahooli appears at Winter Solstice with Ewtoto to re-open thae kivas (religious chambers) for the beginning of the new year – or more accurately; the renewal of the annual cycle of life. Just under 12.5 inches high and $350. (SANTA FE)
Hakto - spirit of the forest and a katsina borrowed and adapted from the Zuni. By Nick Brokeshoulder. 12.5 inches high. $240. (SANTA FE)
A Natukvika by Nick Brokeshoulder. 18 inches high. $300. (SANTA FE)
A Tokots or Wildcat katsina, by Randy Brokeshoulder. 11 5/8 inches high. $270. (SANTA FE)
A Yot.se'e or Apache katsina by Nick Brokeshoulder. 14 inches high. $250 (SANTA FE) $450 for the pair
An Angwus Taqa or Crow Boy by Randy Brokeshoulder. 9.5 inches high. $250. (SANTA FE)
A Yot.se'e Wuhti or Apache Woman katsina by Nick Brokeshoulder. 12 inche to the tip of her feather. $250 (SANTA FE) $450 for the pair.
A variety of Hu katsina (one of the Whipper katsinas) that appears only at Old Orayvi on Third Mesa. By Nick Brokeshoulder, it stands 16.5 inches high and is $300. (SANTA FE)
Carved by Lyle Lomayma of the Fire Clan from the village of Munqapi. This Pang (Mountain Sheep) katsina with a red corn body is 20.5 inches tall and $475. (TUCSON)
Randy Brokeshoulder carved this Owangaroro. He is one of the so-called “Mad” katsinas. He is regarded as dangerous and must be lead around at rope’s length by a Mudhead. It is said that if rocks are thrown at him he will catch and eat the rocks. At Second Mesa he sometime acts as a guard katsina. 13 3/8inches high. $330. (SANTA FE)