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A very large Navajo folk art sandpainting on muslin cloth by Roger Hathaali, Mexican Hat, Utah, c.1988
Navajo Medicine man and folk artist, Roger Hathaali (1918-2002) began making these fantastic images in the 1980’s. They are drawn directly from traditional Navajo curing ceremonies of which Hathaali was a practicing master. The name “Hathaali” in Navajo actually means “Medicine Man” or traditional healer. These images are a marvelous and unique window into Navajo cosmology, religion, culture and traditions.
For a short period only, from around 1985-1990, Hathaali painstakingly painted the images using hand-ground natural mineral pigments on sand-colored muslin cloth to simulate actual sandpaintings which are always created by a Medicine Man and his assistants in a ceremonial Navajo hogan using these same ground natural pigments upon a natural sand floor.
This piece is one of the very finest works by Roger Hathaali that we have ever seen. It is a very large depiction of the famous Sun’s House Screen used in one of the most renowned of all Navajo ceremonials, the epic “Shooting Way” Chant. We are the original owners of this piece. We purchased it directly from one of Roger Hathaali’s gallery representatives in 1988 soon after Roger completed it. We sold it soon thereafter and we have just recently gotten it back.
The sandpainting measures 50 1/2” by 35 1/2” (sight) and 54 1/2” by 39 1/2” (framed). It is in excellent original condition with some natural minor spots and discoloration to the muslin cloth which were present when the piece was made. The sandpainting is newly framed in a beautiful, custom-carved splined maple wood frame by Goldleaf Framemakers of Santa Fe, one of Santa Fe’s highest-quality fine art framing shops.
Price $6,000 plus shipping