Codex Taawa


Codex Taawa is a series of illustrations inspired by ancient imagery that explores the cosmos of the Hopi people. Each piece highlights a part of the Hopi tradition, stories, or knowledge. The original artworks reproduced here were black and copper ink on handmade Nepalese Lhakpa paper and were inspired by the Codices of Mesoamericans. For the Hopi, the night sky is an astronomical calendar with all of its elements used to set ceremonies, rituals, seasons, events, and measures of time. The Hopi people have observed and measured the movements in the sky to create a complex guide to assist them with existing in this world, which we know as Tuuwaqatsi―the Fourth World.

About the Author

Gerald Dawavendewa grew up in the Hopi village of Munqapi, located in the desert of Northern Arizona, and with Cherokee relatives in the deep woods of Oklahoma. He remembers the night skies. With little outdoor lighting at Munqapi and none at his Cherokee grandparent's home, the night sky was overwhelming, with every space filled with stars, planets, meteors, the milky way, and the moon. In 1994, in partnership with NASA and the University of Arizona, Gerald was honored to be asked to create artwork depicting the Hopi cosmos, which was sent into space aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour (STS-59). Through his artwork, Gerald hopes to share his cultures, educate the public about the rich heritage of native nations, and promote a greater understanding of the indigenous world.

  • ISBN-13: 978-1940322452
  • Genre: Native American Spirituality
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Trim: 7" x 9"
  • Page count: 104 pages
  • Published by Rio Nuevo Publishers in 2022
  • Written and illustrated by Gerald Dawavendewa
  • Audience: Adult
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