Museum of New Mexico Press


Huichol Art and Culture

Balancing the World: Featuring the Robert M. Zingg Collection of the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture

Melissa S. Powell, Editor
C. Jill Grady, Editor

The indigenous Huichols of western Mexico have retained their unique culture and arts that predate Spanish contact. The origins of modern Huichol art are found in the early religious arts that form the outstanding collection of Robert M. Zingg, the first American anthropologist to conduct extended fieldwork among the Huichol. It includes a vast array of Huichol art including textiles, prayer arrows, richly decorated votive gourd bowls, featherwork, and beaded jewelry.


"an indispensible reference of work for the collector or researcher, laden with feast-your-eyes photographs of the superb artifacts collected by Robert M. Zingg, the first anthropologist to do extensive fieldwork (1934-35) among the Huichol, a Native American people of western Mexico. Despite their reputation for their art and an exaggerated notoriety for their use of peyote cactus in sacred rituals, the Huichol themselves have mostly remained a mystery. Zingg's black-and-white photographs accompany contemporary images of the Huichol, illustrating what has changed (like using metal pots and pans) and how they evolved the commercial applications of their art. The scholarship stands out, assiduously explaining Huichol belief systems, devotional arts, weavings, society, and culture.


"a beautiful full color collection of images and studies of Huichol art and culture from the extensive Zingg collection housed at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture in Santa Fe which included views of yarn paintings, textiles, prayer arrows, votive gourd bowls, feather work, and beaded jewelry, as well as many sepia and black and white vintage field photographs of Huichol AmerIndians taken by Zingg and others. In addition to the editors, contributors include, Peter T. Furst, Stacy B. Schaefer, Hope MacLean, and Susanah Eger Valadez."
-Midwest Book Review

Trim: 11" x 9"

Pages: 176

Illustrations: 134 color and 70 black-and-white photographs

American Indians

Folklore/Folk Arts



Paperback $39.95