Gan Dancers

Ghan Dancers

These are statues of Gan Dancers.  Not be mistaken for Kachinas.  In the American Southwest Indian traditions, Kachinas are men dressed up as gods in order to teach lessons.  Gan Dancers were gods dressed up as men in order to bless and protect.  A big difference. To be a Gan Dancer was to have a priestly vocation. One that was taken most seriously.

These particular statues were carved by an unknown Hopi artist,  around 1940 I believe.   Gan Dancers, though were of the Apaches Indians.  I am fortunate to have these fellows reside in my living room.  Growing  up in Southern Arizona, close to where Cochise and Geronimo  lived,   I feel a certain kinship to them.

After taking this photo of these potent mountain guardians, my first thought was to adjust the light and soften it, give the white more warmth. But the longer  I contemplated the photo,  the more I saw the balance and quality of the light and the hue of the colors, although seemingly sharp, were absolutely perfect – a rarity for a one time point and shoot. The blue in the background art is spot on. The salmon color of the Dancer on the right is exact, and the shadows are crisp. Indeed the shadows almost feel more alive than the dancers.  Better not to thumb your nose in the face of  Lady Luck.

Here is one more photo,  this one of the real thing, an Edward S. Curtis photo.

thanks for taking some LIP from me



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