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I purchased the painting shown in 2000 in Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, México, for a hefty sum, as well as several other small pieces by the same author, Ramon Bautísta Cervantes.
The work measured perhaps 80 x 80 cm, and was made of dyed yarn pressed into beeswax spread over a wooden board backing.
The painting appears to me to be an example of the native shamanic art of the Huicholes, an indigenous people of west-central México. I first became aware of the style in the mid-90s as part of my explorations of psychedelics and shamanism. There is a bit of confusion as to origins here, however, as the author writes “arte Tepehuano” (“art of the Tepehuán people”) on the back side. I don’t know how to resolve that disparity.
Before I left the US, I left this painting and a few other objects in the care of my dear friend, Chris Williams, at the home of him and his wife in Silicon Valley, California. Last August, their house burned down. A pet gecko perished in the flames, one cat suffered ear-tip and paw burns, and they lost a great deal of property, including this painting and those other objects. Chris blogs occasionally of the incident and its aftermath at http://www.electricrain.com/~cgw/purplewood/fire/. My sympathy, of course, lies with Chris, his wife and their animals, and finding out that they went through this experience largely unscathed means a lot more to me than having lost some sentimental objects that wouldn’t fit into my luggage.
Some time ago, wanting to see the thing again, I asked Chris to photograph it. He did so, and posted photos of the front and back sides at his website. These are now reproduced here, so that this work may continue to be enjoyed for its pattern and form, even though its substance has been destroyed. Thanks, Chris! Thanks, internets!
My own Spanish being somewhat inadequate to the task, and the language used on the back side being somewhat non-standard, I commissioned a translation and correction into “standard” Castillian of the text. This was graciously provided by José Arnoldo Rodríguez Carrington of Ciudad Ayala, Morelos, México. Arnoldo’s work is below. ¡Graciás, Señor!
Cuando el sol se crusa con la luna el curandero no puede curar por que no se alibian los enfermos más se agraban porque el sol pierde la fuersa a sia, a la tierra la luna oculta los secretos de la sabiduría la chuparrosa espera
Cuando el sol se cruza con la luna el curandero no puede curar porque no se alivian los enfermos. Más bien se agravan porque el sol pierde la fuerza hacia la tierra. La luna oculta los secretos de la sabiduría. La chuparrosa espera la comisión que le da el curandero al dios del agua. Los curanderos están atentos de la cruza del sol y la luna.
When the sun crosses the moon, the medicine man cannot heal because sick people do not get well. Instead, they get more ill because the sun loses its strength towards the earth. The moon obscures the secrets of wisdom. The hummingbird expects the commission the medicine man gives the God of Water. The medicine men are heedful of the crossing of the sun and the moon.
- Related Blogs on Huichol
- Huichol Yarn Painting | Huichol Art
- HUICHOL NECKLACE | Huichol Art
- SPIRIT MAN~Mexican Huichol Indian Beaded Mask | Huichol Art
- huichol bead art | Huichol Art
- Related Blogs on psychedelic
- Psychedelic Shaq Blue | Hooped Up
- Related Blogs on Tepehuáno
- VISIT TO HUICHOL LAND
- con el pueblo tepehuano en durango, 6 de noviembre
- already in nayarit