Chiricahua Spirits

Dimensions 85 cm x 55 cm x 38 cm
Materials Sandblasted glass, bronze, wood
Collection Flint Institute of Art, Flint, MI

Throughout my life I have been fascinated with different Native American cultures after having been moved as a child by the story of the remnants of an Illiniwek Tribe being starved by a rival band of the Ottawa after the murder of the war chief Pontiac.

This piece is about the ceremony and religion of the Chiricahua a branch of the Apache nation of the southwestern USA principally Oklahoma and New Mexico. Two of the most well-known historical figures of this tribe are the warrior chief and medicine man, Geronimo and the chief Cochise. The Chiricahua Spirit refers to the supernatural power needed for guidance throughout one’s life.

The elements in the sculpture are the crown and mask of the mountain spirit dancer and the medicine pouch of the spiritual leader.