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Radiant with color, this extraordinary mask by Higinio Hernandez speaks of life close to the earth. On the forehead, a corn plant (tatei yukahima) sends out ripe ears of golden maize. Glowing suns warm the cheeks, and Kawuyomaire, the sacred blue deer, appears on either side of the forehead. Brother of the Huichol people, Kawuyomaire travels the heavens as a guide and guardian. Peyote blossoms, or jicuri, are depicted on the chin. Jicuri is the centerpiece of Huichol ritualism, revered for its curative properties and its ability to enlighten those who partake of it.
Aided by his wife and guided by their imagination and feelings, Hernandez creates these vivid images with brilliant chaquira beads patiently placed one at a time on a surface coated with beeswax, instead of glue. His masks reveal the rich cosmology of the Huichol people and add color and life to any setting.
Care instructions: Do not expose this piece to direct heat or light, which may cause the wax to dry or soften, and thus loosen the beads.
Higinio was very emotionally affected after being abandoned by his mother at the age of four. In his words, "When I was four years old, my mom abandoned me and left me with my dad. I was an only child. Later, he remarried and, when my stepmother arrived, that's where the emotional problems started. She did not treat me like my half-brothers. I always ate last. My dad never noticed. When I was 11 years old, it was so bad that I left home. It was very difficult surviving by myself, although I learned a lot. I went to the city. And later, when I returned to the village, they respected me more. I learned how to handle myself and they see me better. And I help the community. My half brothers respect me now and we have no problems."
Higinio has left a profound impact in his community and has successfully tripled the growth of his endeavor from his first six months at NOVICA.
Higinio passes down traditional techniques to his family in order to preserve the authenticity of each of his Huichol beadwork designs.
Higinio's sales from NOVICA represent the majority of his income. Each purchase makes a profound impact on his family's livelihood.
51 Artisans Impacted
1 Helpful Vote (verified_buyer)
Huichol bead work is exquisite and this mask is a wonderful example of Huichold craftmanship. The colors are varied and the overall impression is mystical.
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