Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Ethnic Heritage Days | Grand Canyon

While I was at the Grand Canyon, I was lucky enough to be able to see some of the ethnic Heritage Days, which included representatives from different tribes in the area, including Navajo, Hopi, Zuni and Paiute.

There was a Navajo Indian doing glass blowing. He set up with the furnace and kiln and went through the entire procedure to make a glass.

Another man was crafting drums out of hollowed out tree sections, with animal skin tops.

There was a table full of native foods, ground corn and other food related items. I was amazed at the selection of local corn that is still being grown and used. The woman told me that the red corn makes such a pretty pink flour.
There were quite a few Kachina dolls on display, from different tribes. A Kachina is a "spirit being" in the Indian culture.

These were interesting, they are carved from sections of trees. When I asked him what it meant, he told me that it was weather - the arrows are lightning and the other three sections represent clouds. 
There was basket weaving, the first one shows how they are started.


There was a Hopi man doing silver jewelry, which was very nice. 

My favorite at the pottery table was a large bowl with very fine details, all hand painted. It was quite large, probably a foot across.

The inside of the bowl represents clouds in the 9 squares on the bottom, with lines showing rain. Obviously, rain was very important to them. 

I was really impressed with this little white bowl with dragonflies on the sides. The little squiggly things inside and outside are fish.

Indians have always been known for their beadwork. This gourd was quite big, probably at least a foot across. This beadwork could be used for decoration, and some women wear them as a collar on a dress.

It was a small show, but it certainly packed a good selection showcasing their history and what we think of as crafts, but it was all utilitarian for them.

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