Few art forms are more significant to Navajo religious beliefs than the sandpainting, or ikaah. Sandpaintings play a major role in Navajo ceremonies, assisting healers to cure ailments by summoning the supreme beings' aid to restore harmony to both mind and body. In this clear, brief, yet profoundly informed text, Mark Bahti reviews the history of the sandpainting - from its original, and continuing, sacred purpose to the purely artistic creations produced and sold by some sandpainting artists today. With his collaborator, Eugene Baatsoslanii Joe, Bahti explains the meanings of the images and colors in sandpaintings and tells some of the traditional stories that they represent.
All Contents © 2011
Rio Nuevo Publishers, Inc. Banner photo © Saija Lehtonen