Shalako Mana (Woman) Kachina, c. 1990 by Bennett Sockyma, Hopi
Shalako (Woman) Kachina, c. 1990 by Bennett Sockyma, Hopi cottonwood, pigment 15.75" high x 10" wide x 5" deep
The Shalako Taka (Male) and Mana (female) are considered to be the oldest and most sacred Katsinam of Hopi. The ceremony is held only once every 7 to 10 years and due to its importance is closed to the public. The Shalako Katsinam represent cloud people of the highest order. It is believed that they have performed for over a thousand years, and their power seems to be strongest of all Katsinam since the things expected from nature always occur during the ceremony. The design on the Shalako Katisinam represents rain falling and clouds. The hair is cut in a geometric pattern that represents a cloud and the hair itself represents rain. The headdress is a series of clouds, lighting, rainbows, and rain with feathers. These feathers represent the female rains, which are considered to be gentle rains that are important to us because they soak into the earth instead of running off.