Victor Masayesva Jr
Hopiit, 14 min, 1982
This lyrical short video, Masayesva’s first, is created from footage shot while working as director of the Ethnic Heritage Program in Hotevilla, Arizona. Hopiit is a montage of different views of Hopi landscapes and people during the cycle of the seasons. Work and play, ceremonial rituals and the rituals of everyday life throughout the year are woven together in a seamless vision that conveys the oral traditions of storytelling, the natural landscape of Arizona, and the richness of Hopi culture. It is intentionally unsubtitled as a way of honoring the Hopi language and to test the media literacy of viewers.
The productions of Victor Masayesva Jr., an independent videomaker working from his home on the Hopi Reservation, emerges from a history of intrusive visitation to the reservation by filmmakers and photographers since the beginning of the century. In his work, he presents aspects of the culture in terms unimpeded by non-Hopi preconceptions of what is significant, or, alternatively, by conceptions of the exotic which have so often inspired the images made of the Hopi. – Emilia Seubert
Watch Victor Masayesva Jr.’s Indian Time at Arizona State University.