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Shadow of a Shaman in Santa Fe

Deanna Keahey  ·  Sep 3, 2010  ·  2 Comments

Shadow of a shaman in Santa Fe

Shadow of a shaman in Santa Fe

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As the firelight flickered, the slow rhythmic chanting grew louder.  The shaman lifted his arms to the heavens.  He raised his voice, beseeching those in the spirit world to send the rain they so desperately needed.  Soon, they heard a low rumbling of thunder, distant at first, growing closer and louder, and the skies opened...
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Sorry, guess I got carried away!That's what happens when I look at this picture, with some new-age music playing, and a monsoon thunderstorm going on outside!

Seriously, this is the shadow of a sculpture that stands outside a gallery in downtown Santa Fe, New Mexico.  I love the statue itself, but the shadow it casts is even more mysterious, and more like the shadowy world of the shaman.  It's shadowy to us because of the difference in time, place, and culture; shadowy to those circled around him by the fire because they couldn't comprehend his mystical powers.

Santa Fe is full of galleries featuring fabulous fine art.  Of course there are plenty of western themes, and native-crafted or native-inspired pieces, which fit so well with this southwest city.  But it's also one of the largest art markets in the US, and you can find everything from modern art to Asian antiques.  If you're looking to spend $100K on the perfect accent piece for your living room, there's probably someone in Santa Fe who has just what you're looking for.

I'm not usually in the market for serious art, but I do enjoy looking. I'm happy that they put this sculpture by Bill Worrell out in public, where we can all enjoy it.  It's come to seem like a part of Santa Fe to me, and I hope it's still there the next time I'm back in town.

You can also see similar works by the same artist in uptown Sedona, outside a gallery close to where we stay on our trips there.

See more works by artist Bill Worrell...

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We'll be back in Santa Fe in just a few weeks for our Southwest Hiking Adventure.  We still have one space left open on that trip, so if you want to join us and discover some New Mexico awesomeness, this your chance!  See the Santa Fe trip...
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Categories: Destination tidbits · Santa Fe
Posted from:   Tucson, AZ       Photo credit:   Deanna Keahey

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Martha Lennings // Nov 17, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    When I was a child, I used to be afraid of shamans, because they were often portrayed in movies to be like witches or some kind of evil force making people dread them to death. However, I realized they were not at all evil, they were even known to be the ancient doctors, most of them being the elders of the tribe protecting and nourishing their people.

    This sculpture reminds me of the primary and brave act of a shaman, to connect with the spirit world and seek refuge for his people's good.

    Thank you for this fine article! ^^

  • 2 Percy // Dec 31, 2010 at 9:54 pm

    I like the photo above. Captured and frozen creativity! Like Martha, I used to think shamans are evil witches but learned otherwise when fairytale books were out and algebra textbooks are in. :p I'm in intrigued with Santa Fe - seems like a nice place to explore...

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