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Of all colors, in many countries, red is most frequently considered sacred and associated with women, joy and fertility. The woman in my painting walks in a sacred manner, for she is Pte Hinsala San Win, (White Buffalo Calf Pipe Woman) Some elders, in the 1960's, stated Pte Hinsala San Win is Whope, the Falling Star: daughter of Mahpiyato (Sky). The colors in this giclee are strong but not as bright as the images appear. The most accurate, on my monitor, is the image with my hand and the 4 bison.

Red is fertility; plump round berries ripe to bursting with juice, the color of sun setting across the backs of buffalo grazing late summer grasses. Red is joy both small and large; the emergence of a newborn into this world of light, the tiny ladybug, and flash of red winged blackbird’s wing. Red is honor, red ochre mixed with buffalo fat and applied along the central, straight parting of a woman’s hair, signifying she walks in a beautiful manner. Red is the road of harmony and balance upon which we travel, the color of blood flowing in our veins. Red is the color of our life and of our heart

There are different versions of her story, well known, so I won't repeat them. Her face is painted with red and yellow ochre, the pattern worn by mature Lakota women prior to the reservation period, announcing that the one wearing it is an honorable woman. She wears circular shell earrings, for me these symbolize the moon, a feminine symbol.

Beneath the robe is luminous red, a sacred color in many tribes.In my art, red symbolizes earth itself, blood, woman, health and life. Four bison represent the four directions, seasons, and phases of a humans life. My personal symbolism of four in this image is balanced integration of wisdom and knowledge: remembering to seek out the old wisdom while navigating these new times. Four bison are depicted at the lower part of the painting.

The bison emerge, like the people themselves in the Lakota origin story, out of a dark womb - like place: Wind Cave. Lakota medicine stories state that bison returned underground to the womb of Ina Maka ( Mother Earth) every winter. In spring they returned, migrating north to the Black Hills for calving time; the constellations above mirror the migration and tell the People when to cease gathering cansasa, the inner bark of the red dogwood, when and where to conduct certain ceremonies Its said White Buffalo Calf Pipe Woman dropped to the ground, rolled over, shape shifting into a bison four times, each cycle a different color, as she took leave of the tribe. Each color has meaning and was both prophesy and warning.

The shield design is a visual prayer placing all nations in harmony, each in its rightful place within the Sacred Hoop.

White Buffalo Calf Pipe Woman has never been worshiped as a goddess, that I know of, by Lakota. Sometimes people, from other religious and cultural traditions, try to portray her that way. Rather, she is an honored, sacred messenger , female role model, and culture hero.

This giclee is in good shape but has some bent places along the edge of the white border - see the photo with paint brushes. Once framed, the dents will not show, or they can be cropped off depending on your matt size. The price has been adjusted to reflect the damage on the paper's edge.
11" x 16" image size
13 x 18" including white margin

ARCHIVAL INK, ARCHIVAL PAPER: This is a professionally printed giclee, not something I ran off on the home printer. The quality is excellent.

Arrives ready to frame, and signed - tell me if you want my signature on the image or in the white margin, beneath.

Walking in a Sacred Manner signed giclee


  • Handmade item
  • Materials: archival paper, archival ink
  • Ships worldwide from United States
  • Feedback: 461 reviews
  • Favorited by: 46 people