Arte Huichol

Arte Huichol

The origin and meaning of the ethnic wixárika is an enigma in which there are no agreements between the different studies, among their meanings, some are listed as healers, farmers and feather, among others. The Wixárika territory includes Jalisco, Nayarit, Zacatecas and Durango. Huichol art is primitive and at the same time current, synthetic and of great optical effect, which has the characteristic of alternating, contrasting, lines or parallel and successive stripes with which they compose their drawings expressed with exuberance and audacity in color, in fusion or mixture of different elements - symbolic, cultural and religious syncretism - in a stylization that expresses abstract notions and a particular vision in a single plane, without volume or perspective, of the forms of nature. The Huichol gods personify natural phenomena; the main ones represent the four elements: fire and air (males), earth and water (females). They call the fire Tatewari grandfather because it existed before the Sun, which they call father. The goddesses are called mothers: there is one in each cardinal point and another one above, taking care that the world does not fall. Great-grandmother Nakawé is under the earth and is what makes trees and plants sprout. The Virgin of Guadalupe (Tanana), young eagle mother, has been added to the Huichol pantheon; Jesus crucified (Tatata Nuitzicame), elder brother; and a series of saints of Catholic tradition resignified to the Huichol custom, such as San Sebastián and Santo Santiago, denoting an undeniable religious syncretism that has been developed in recent centuries. In all their religious ceremonies, the Huichols ingest peyote to enter into communion with their deities and participate, themselves, in the divine power, as they approach, in the course of the polychrome visions that dissociate the alkaloid, the primal sources of perception. The collection of the peyote, in turn, originates an annual pilgrimage to Wirikuta, near Real de Catorce, in the territory of San Luis Potosí.

Huichol Art

Ceremonial tables

The tablets, like the shields that preceded them, are called namas, and are placed in the shrines to propitiate the favor of the deities. They represent the deer (maxa), spokesman of men before the gods; the golden eagle (werika), heart of the god of fire; the dove and the coyote, linked to the goddess of the earth (Yurianaka); the fish, invocation to Tatei Matieneri, that reunites all the aquatic deities, except Haramara, the goddess of the sea that materialized in the water of the sea and is located in San Blas, Nayarit; and the serpent, whose multiple meaning alludes to the sea, to the wind, to the rivers, to the lightning, to the rain, to the fire, to the smoke and to the clouds, to every wave, sinuous or zigzagging movement.

All these natural elements propitiate or make it difficult to obtain the crops, the young and the hunting and fishing animals.

Art in Chaquira

Chaquira. With the beadwork, the Huichol elaborates small tables where the figures are made with little beads stuck on a layer of wax that extends over the wood or onto the fibercel.

It makes necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings, backpacks, necklaces and belts that do not serve properly to gird, but to put them as ornaments on top of the girdle. The huichol designates with the name of kuka everything that is made with the base of chaquira. Since before the conquest, the art of stringing together different kinds of beads - bone, clay, stone, shell, coral, turquoise, pyrite, jade and hard seeds of some fruits - was already known.

The Huichols also use the beadwork to patiently decorate gourds with figures of deer, suns or flowers, and jaguar heads.

Ojos de Dios

Los ojos de dios —tsikuri— son cruces de varas con un rombo de estambre de colores. Estas cruces, cuando se asocian a otros objetos se tratan de solicitudes concretas y cuando se las lleva solas es para que la deidad acompañe y proteja al devoto.

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