Sweet Corn Koyemsi Kachina by noted carver Herb Talaheftewa. This 10 ½” Kachina was carved from one piece of cottonwood root in the traditional Hopi manner.
This Mudhead (Toson Koyemsi) is the Sweet Cornmeal-Tasting Mudhead. He demands the Hopi girls to grind corn. He returns four days later to taste the cornmeal and see if it was well-ground and sweet. The corn meal always passes the taste test but the Mud Head Toson always takes a long time and a big production out of making up his mind, to the terror of the girls and to the delight of the villagers.
This version with the long robe comes from the Second Mesa.
Herb Talahaftewa was born in 1954 and is a member of the Corn Clan. He has been active carving since 1965 and is known for his detailed, one-piece carvings. His work is in the permanent collection of the Heard Museum.
About the Carver:
Herb Talahaftewa was born March 29, 1954 at Winslow, Arizona. He is a member of the Corn Clan. Herb has been active carving since 1965.
Herb is the great-grandson of Zola & Marshal Kewanvoyouma; great-grandson of Clark Ruben Talahaftewa; (P) grandson of Herbert Talahaftewa, (the elder, textile weaver, and silversmith) and Evangeline Talahaftewa (basket weaver) and son of Lena Talahaftewa. He was named after his grandfather, Herbert Talaheftewa, who was a famous traditional doctor, herbalist, weaver and silversmith.
Carving is a relaxing experience for Herb who specializes in detailed one piece carvings. “Honestly, it keeps me sane.”
Because his kachinas are carved “the old way” (one piece), his work is a favorite of collectors.
He currently resides at Second Mesa on the Hopi Reservation. His work is in the permanent collection of the Heard Museum. He specializes in highly realistic one-piece carvings.
1972, Scottsdale Nationals, Scottsdale, AZ; Inter-tribal Indian Ceremonial, Gallup, NM;
1971, Hopi Show, Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, AZ; Inter-tribal Indian Ceremonial, Gallup, NM;
1995, “Following the Sun and the Moon”, Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ
2006, Katsina Marketplace, Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ