In this case, I got inspired by one of many descriptions I’ve read of the Manitou according to the Ojibwe people. Floating around my mind, are a great many folk tales and illustrations from the old folktale paperbacks I collected as a teen. This one seems to rise out of the ground like heat haze on a hot day. It is only visible from the corner of the eye, or when one squints. The idea of transforming it into an animal spirit was also from a description of Manitou.

Materials: soft pastels and charcoals on watercolour paper.

Dimensions: 9″ x 12″

Overview note on this series of spirit studies: During research on Hopi Kachina dolls I did for a major essay at school, I came face to face with more questions on appropriation than I was prepared to understand. The first challenge was writing with anything resembling respectful expertise on indigenous traditions from around the world and the second was dealing with the images they inspired me to make. I hold no claim to authenticity, nor any in-depth understanding of the significance of these images. In many cases, as is part of my art practice, I allowed myself to transform and recombine inspirations into something new-ish.

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