Aholi

Aholi

Appears only on the Third Mesa during a particular ceremony called Powamu (can be an initiation of children into the kachina cult or for the upcoming growing season) and in the company of another kachina named Eototo. Legend has it that these two kachinas followed and supported each other through migrations that took them from Mexico to Utah to their present location on the Third Mesa. The staff is of particular importance – as Eototo places his cloud mark on the ground, Aholi places his staff over top and swings it around yelling Ah-holi-i-i-i – thus reinforcing Eototo’s actions.

What attracted me the most to this kachina was his colored cloak, his tall blue helmet and his wonderful tail. Drawing him first and then reproducing him in such a large format using multiple tools and a definite timeline for drying presented certain challenges. Corrections while the gels are wet can be time-consuming and stressful as one change can engender another. Preplanning your design and tool placement in advance is helpful but this does not guarantee that the placement will work. As I cannot outline the figure first (as the gels cover it anyway), when I first begin placement of the many metallic grids, combs, cookie cutters, and various nets, I am essentially designing blindly. Once I have a good “background” of interesting textures I must then constantly adjust the figure for perspective, texture placement, and areas of interest in the clothing or other key features. Aholi was completed with oil paints and the background has some Iridescent acrylics to add luster to the black background. SIZE 33” x 66”

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