Monday, March 29, 2010

Full Crow Moon...

Happy Full Moon! March's Crow Moon heralds the end of winter...yay! I'm looking forward to a busy Spring and Summer! I've been invited to participate in an all female group art exhibition in June, so I've started working on some new pieces. I want to cover some old bottles and stones with leather so I started doing a little research on leather sculpting. At one point I googled "leather covered objects" and my eyes nearly popped out of my head when I stumbled across designer Natalia Brilli. Her line of leather covered sculptural objects, handbags, jewelry and accessories can be found at gravitypope. Here are a couple of my favorites from her collection!

jay bird skull pendant...

leather covered coyote skull...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Littlefeather Organics



Littlefeather Organics is the brainchild of Earth loving Mama, Emmelie Brunetti. There are several natural product lines under the umbrella of Littlefeather Organics; NOMAD Exclusive Handmade, HOPI Botanicals, HAWKWEED'S Free Spirited Herbal Healing, and NUNA Hair & Scalp Elixir. The Littlefeather Organics aesthetic is reminiscent of old Native American Trading Posts. I caught up with Emmelie recently and she had some very inspiring things to say regarding the Native American aesthetic of Littlefeather Organics. She states,

"The underlying Native American theme that runs as a connecting thread throughout my ideas, products and brands, aims to reconnect the circle by raising awareness about the importance of preserving Native American culture, as well as all other indigenous societies, by recognizing their distinctive ability to maintain a healthy and spiritually rich relationship with the Earth. The idea of wanting to name my project HOPI botanicals came to me in the middle of the night. I knew then and there that this was my calling. For me, HOPI also refers to an acronym formed by the words Holistic, Organic, Pacific & Indigenous. These are the four main pillars of the philosophy which supports my products & activities."



The Hopi Prophecy says mankind must return to Peaceful ways to halt the Destruction of Mother Earth. Tibetan Buddhists have a similar prophecy, which was discussed when the Dali Lama met with the Hopi Elders a few years ago. It's Universal. I first heard of the Hopi Prophecy many many Moons ago, when I was in High School. I was a fan of The Cult and had a HUGE teenage crush on Ian Astbury, the lead singer. A friend of mine gave me a mix tape that included a song called "Moya" by Ian's first band, Southern Death Cult. It's about the Hopi Prophecy. Coincidentally (or not), Emmelie created a custom medicine bag for Ian Astbury just recently! Check out her line NOMAD - exclusive handmade solid perfume amulets offered in a custom leather medicine bags, uniquely designed to accommodate the different silver and turquoise boxes. A blend of exotic oils, amber essence and precious woods hand poured into one-of-a-kind vintage Navajo pill boxes. Emmelie's always creating something new so check out her blog for updates!



The Hopi Prophecy speaks of the white man who would come to them and help transform the entire continent into a spiritual paradise. But the Prophecy also warns that if the white man does not give in return for what is taken, then the Hopi will hold the land till human beings learn to live in harmony with Nature and each other. The Power under the land will be used for destruction...Earth Changes! Emmelie Brunetti has taken this prophecy to heart and plans to donate a portion of her profits to various indigenous causes. Her first donation was made to Wisdom Keepers, a Native American non-profit cause and grass-roots organization that provides cross-cultural, intercultural and intra-cultural educational opportunities in Tennessee.



Thursday, March 18, 2010

Respect the Elders

The rocks were here before people were here. Lakota traditions say that life began with the rise of a great stone from the waters of creation. The Lakota word "tunkaschila" meaning “grandfather” is sometimes used for the word "stone" because stones are referred to as our elders.




I love these magick stones by Jos van Wunnik

Related Posts: Speaking Stones

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Monday, March 15, 2010

Eshu Alagbana: part 2

artwork by Gordillo Arredondo

Read *Meet Me at the Crossroads for part 1 of this topic* I'm still receiving questions about Eshu Alagbana in my inbox but ebay won't allow me to post answers because there's only 12 hours until the bidding is over! If the Reserve price of $333 is not met, I will relist or work it out behind the scenes, as I have several interested parties. (Why $333? 3+3+3=9, 3 is Esu's number and 9 is Oya's number) Meanwhile, there are still some issues to be addressed, so here we go, questions and answers...

Q: Hello... Do you know what its made of and what is in side the hole on top of its head, or is it still loaded... Thanks for your time...

A: Hello! The bowl is filled with the appropriate herbs, roots, dirt, bones and such that are attributed to Eshu Alagbana. It was then covered with a layer of cement and wax. The head itself is set into the cement and is made out of a coconut shell. I've only added herbs attributed to Eshu and Oya to the head, but it is not full at all. I would leave the herbs in there because it is part of the Ashe (energy) of the Eshu that resides in this head. There is plenty of room to add more herbs or even cemetery dirt from the gates of the cemetery or the crossroads. I will be happy to send along some cemetery dirt to whoever receives this Eshu. I have some from the Masonic Cemetery New Orleans and the St. Louis cemetery, home of Marie Laveau, the legendary Voodoo Queen of New Orleans. (the dirt was traditionally paid for with coins and rum) This is only necessary if you intend to work with the Guédé Barons (Baron Samedi, Baron La Croix, ect.)

An army of "Spiritual Eshus" The one in the middle is most likely the one in charge.

Q: I am curious to know how this Ellegua changed hands 2 times. All Elleguas have to be consemated in the owners name. I myself have an Ellegua and would not part with him, have you asked this Ellegua if in fact he is alive and has been fed if he wanted to go to a new home? This is a very odd for me to see someone selling Ellegua online on Ebay. Are you positive you want to do this? Also Elleguas are given for life not a certain probationary period stage. I am tempted to bid on him only becuase he needs a home, but I wouldnt want him to conflict with the Ellegua I already own. Any thoughts on any of the questions I submitted?

A: This is a "Spiritual Eshu" NOT an "Elegua Head" A spiritual Eshu represents a certain "Path of Elegua". It is NOT fed with blood. An "Elegua Head" represents the Orisha Elegua and is fed with a blood offering when it is created in the name of it's owner. That is the Elegua you keep for life. I would not sell an "Elegua Head" consecrated in my name. If you don't know the difference between a Spiritual Eshu and an Elegua Head you should not bid on this item. I say this with RESPECT. Ache!


Gordillo Arredondo

Further more, this is no mass produced, over-the-counter Eshu! This is the real deal. Now that I think about it I don't think anyone who isn't initiated with at least having received their elekes and warriors should even think about bringing this into their home. I don't want to be held responsible for any chaos that might ensue. This is not an artifact! The entity that this effigy houses, is a very real supernatural creature which occupies a parallel world to us. It is a being of free will and has the power to travel large distances at extreme speeds and can be in more than one place at a time. (Eshus are the same as the Djinn) He is powerful enough to harass and even possess humans. You must rely on a Higher Power (GODHEAD) to protect you when working with supernatural forces because they might try to trick you or bend you to their own will Also, this Eshu is prone to romantic infatuation with females so this is better off in the hands of a man. It will compliment the sexual prowess of a male owner! If it's owner is a female he might chase away the men in your life because he is very over protective. However a female who has Oya on their head can probably handle this path of Elegua.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child





"Directed by Tamra Davis, the documentary features never before seen footage of the prolific artist painting, talking about his art, and existing in the two years prior to his death in 1988." Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child premiered Feb 21st at Sundance.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Meet Me at the Crossroads

No journey begins without Eshu (aka, Esu, Exu, Elegua, Eleggua, Elegbara, Eleda, Elegba) the Divine Trickster. Eshu, for any of you who are familiar with any earth centered religion, fulfills the role of the divine messenger between Oludamare (the Creator), the gods, the dead and men. He is a phallic horned, god, keeper of the gates, Lord of the Crossroads, guiding us in the right direction. He is often personified as "The Devil" but Eshu is not an adversary of God nor the scapegoat of man as portrayed by Christianity. Instead he is an agent of God, a necessary evil to challenge mankind to evolve and learn from our mistakes. He is present when life is born, and when death arrives; he is there when red blood flows into life, and when the black void takes over.





It is said there are uncountable paths of Elegua, and that these branch out into other manifestations. When we receive Elegua we are given the name of the avatar or path. The Elegua head pictured below houses the Ache (energy) of Eshu Alagwanna, he is the overseer of egungun (spirits of the dead). He can open the lines of communication with the ancestors because he sits at the cemetery gates guarding and maintaining the order of the dead who pass through. He is associated with the Anima Sola (the Lonely Soul), so chains are essential to him. Hell is eternal, but damnation is not. Eshu will punish sinners only for as long as it is necessary to be cleansed by the purifying flames of the inferno.



This is a very strong path of Elegua! He is a spiritual warrior and is said to be the source of all disgraces, afflictions punishments, misfortunes and accidents...he'll beat your ass down in the crossroads! He goes after wrong doers and punishes people not in compliance with God's design. He guards the unfortunate and the hopeless while they gather strength. Eshu Alagwanna is very serious and does not tolerate carelessness or laziness. He teaches humility and respect. He teaches us to work hard and live life to it's fullest. If you are worthy he will open the doors of opportunity and success, and lead you toward the fulfillment of your true destiny! You might hear him say "what doesn't kill you will make you stronger" Have you ever heard the Dead Prez song "Walk like a Warrior"? That's Eshu Alagwanna's theme song!



Eshu Alagwanna, is a close friend and messenger to the warrior goddess, Oya (Spirit of the Wind and Mother of the Dead). Goddess of the Niger River. Oya is the embodiment of the Wind, lightning, fire, and magick. She is a sorceress and is known as one of the Great Mothers of the "Elders of the Night (Witches)" As the Spirit of the Wind, she manifests in Creation in the forms of sudden and drastic change, strong cleansing storms, hurricanes and tornadoes! In this aspect she is accompanied by her husband, the god Shango, Lord of Thunder. He also reconciles these forces into peace and understanding. Oya is the goddess of rapid change, transformation, and the chaos it brings. She is the revolutionary energy that leads to rebirth. She is fearless and for that reason, she governs the Dead and is the protectress of ancestral customs. Her symbol is the broom, and with it she sweeps away all injustice and dishonesty from her path. Not only does she speak the truth, she will only accept the truth. She is a social crusader who always fights for the underdog. I always think of Grace Jones as the personification of Oya! Fierce!



Despite her fierce demeanor, she gives of herself selflessly and places others needs before her own. She is known for her intelligence, gracefulness, and her deep intense sensuality and passion. She is the summer breeze that cools us. She is the gentle winds that carry pollen and is associated with fertility. "Oya’s presence and action is reflected in the flight of birds, the swaying of trees, the whistling of the atmosphere, the blowing of dust, the hurling of dirt, the movement of the waves, the sound of music, the spoken word, the cry of a baby, the roar of the lion, the movement of clouds, and the life of fire. It is Orisha Oya who gives us our passport to life [breath] at birth, and requires its return at death. Oya is therefore, the watcher of the doorway between life and death. She is not death but the awareness of its existence."



Life is but a series of initiations. I have walked with Eshu Alagwanna for 7 years, I've literally been to hell and back. He came to me when I had a storefront Botanica here in Chicago. The energy of Eshu Alagwanna was sent to me to clear the path to my spiritual destiny. My path was blocked with past life issues, genetic & karmic cycles, behavioral conditioning (via family, society and religion), and the consequences of living outside of moral law. Once my Ori, (my higher self, as she exists in heavens) It was made in Cuba by an elder Priest of the religion of La Regla Lucumi also known as Santeria. He was also a powerful sorcerer "scratched in Palo". (Palo Mayombe is the dark side of Santeria) You say you want a revolution? So do I...wanna see my war scars?


ONI TUTU ~ ORI TUTU ~ ILE TUTU
may the head be clean ~ may the house be clean ~ may the way be clean

*Related Post: Rites of Passage

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Doze Green

"Just going in and out, it's pulling stuff from inside. It's based on magic, it's about shadow, it's about darkness, it's about light, it's about understanding, it's about destruction. It's about build-destroy. It's about cycles and spiraling, the Universe."

Ancestors, Totemic Series ~ Doze Green

"I believe that graff, b.boying and djing are kinetic language that in turn are related with each other. Motion, style and expression (or intent) are relayed information to the viewer participant audience. It’s a sonic and visual form of hieroglyphics stemming from 21st century living and technosymbolic sigils created by sentinels and a sort of unique and personal magic is released. This is called ka. The creative force of the universe. This is why it appeals to so many people. This only comes naturally when you release your graff purist letter formats and regulations or when you toss out strict b.boy power moves for a more diverse portfolio."



"Have big balls, grab your nuts and say "hey, fuck it". Don't be afraid man..."

Saturday, March 6, 2010

plug it in and change the world

Transitioning...

I finally got around to opening a New Etsy Shop for my line of handcrafted, natural bath and body care products. I won't be relaunching the line until Spring, but in the meantime I'll still have soap available. I want to get things warmed up, so I'm having a BUY 2 GET 1 FREE SPECIAL while supplies last! I have a new Limited Edition soap called Wolf Mother that I made on the "Wolf Moon" in January. I will be keeping the old shop open but I'm remodeling, rebranding, ect. I actually might even move all my jewelry to Big Cartel because the Etsy and PayPal fees are killing me! I can't wait until my website is up and everything is under one roof! Baby steps...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Ode to Spring...

Chicago Winters can be rather bleak...I'm looking forward Spring! I wish I could hibernate, but I have so many projects to complete before Spring arrives! Pre-Spring cleaning is in full effect. I keep saying I'm going to have a sidewalk sale or something, but no, I'm boxing it all up and throwing everything out! The exception being clothing that will be donated to the local church. I can't wait for April showers and May Flowers!


Bear Mountain by Jen Mann


Jeremy Laing paying tribute to Canada's vast natural resources. "There's Northern elements—but presented in a refined way. It's not about trapper style."

Jónsi of Sigur Rós will be releasing his solo debut April 6th!