Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Cattail Bird

Black Mountain Lion and Black Fox
By Awa Tsireh ca 1923

The artist Awa Tsireh (Cattail Bird), 1895-1955 painted two local animals, a mountain lion on the left, and a fox on the right, under the arching form of a rainbow. This painting was not made to represent a specific event, instead it uses shapes and decorative elements to create an appealing image.

Both animals have designs painted on their sides. The design on the mountain lion represents a storm cloud with lightning bolts shooting out of each side. The design on the fox is called a "heartline" and represents the spirit of the animal by showing the animal's breath moving from its mouth to its heart. At the base of either end of the rainbow, the stepped patterns represent distant mesas or mountains. Along the top of the rainbow are two stepped shapes indicating clouds and dropping from the middle of the rainbow are fine lines of falling rain.

Above the rainbow is the Zia, or sun symbol, with rays pointing in the four directions sacred to Pueblo Indians. The sun symbol has an abstracted face made out of geometric shapes. This symbol indicates that the sun is a living force of the natural world. This sun symbol is now the official symbol of the state of New Mexico.

Eagle Dancers ca 1923
by Awa Tsireh
Water colors and ink

Mounted Warriors
ca. 1925-1930
by Awa Tsireh

Buffalo Dancers ca. 1920-1930
by Awa Tsireh
watercolor and pencil on paperboard


Dutton, Bertha P. American Indians of the Southwest. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1983.
Klein, Barry T. Reference Encyclopedia of the American Indian. 6th ed. West Nyack, N.Y.: Todd Publications, 1993.

San Diego 27
Oakland 0

The Chargers winning against Oakland was the highlight of my day! I woke up this morning with a headache, which is a rare occurrence for me. I had the worst case of heartburn after lunch and I dropped a fan on my foot! Then as I was unloading groceries from the store, a bag tore open breaking a jar of pickles on my driveway. Combine that with the smell of pickling spices and vinegar with 90 degree temps and you have a very grumpy Rain. =0(

Here's hoping that tomorrow is better! Goodnight everyone.

N Posted by Rain at 9/12/2006 12:39:00 AM


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