Fascinating Contemporary Collection of
What is it: These contemporary carvings express movement and innovation—of the figures themselves and the way in which Hopi artists, over time, have invented a new art form. Contemporary Hopi artists created these carvings specifically for sale. Carvings include those representing the diverse Katsinam (plural of Katsina), special spiritual beings of the Hopi as well as other types of figures, such as clowns and characters that relate to oral traditions.
This exhibition features a selection of recently donated contemporary Hopi carvings from three families: Mike and the late Juanita Eagle, Terry and Becky Rader, and Mel and Joan Perelman. The Eagles, Raders, and Perelmans developed a friendly rivalry in their collecting of carvings, and built lasting relationships with the many Hopi artists from whom they collected.
When the Eagles, Raders, and Perelmans began collecting in the 1980s, Hopi artists were actively responding to changes in the market in a variety of ways. Expressing action through a single piece of cottonwood, Hopi artists added details and depth through a combination of fine cutting with pyrography (wood burning), paint, stains, and varnishes. Elaborate bases also became a part of the overall piece. These “friendly rivals” developed a deep appreciation for the creative process and labor involved in these new expressive forms.
Who is it for:This exhibition will appeal to anyone interested in learning more about Hopi contemporary carvings and how they embody the continuum of Native expression. It will also appeal to those who may wish to begin their own collections of Native art.