Thursday, June 9, 2011

All along the Watchtower

On a cliff in Arizona stands the reason I could die and not regret having never seen Machu Picchu, or the Pyramids in Egypt. Undoubtedly one of the best views in all of the Grand Canyon is from the eastern most boundary called Desert View.  From here you can witness God’s handiwork at it’s finest, from the turquoise water of the Colorado River to the hiking trails that take you deep into the canyon floor. There is a tranquility that touches your mind, your heart and your soul as you drink in the beauty. But is it the colors that mesmerize you. It seems to be ever changing as the light moves across it's face. There are different shades of purples, blues, greens, reds, orange, browns, tans that like an artist's paintbrush caressing the canvas comes alive before your eyes as the glorious canyon moves throughout the light of the day and into the night.

 






The Indian Watchtower is at the eastern end of the south rim of the Grand Canyon. From a distance the building's silhouette looks like the Anasazi watchtower it was meant to mimic. The building sits out on a promontory overlooking the Grand Canyon.



The most architecturally impressive section of the building is undoubtedly the tower interior. The structure of this space is entirely plastered and all of the walls are covered with murals. The most distinct images, painted by Hopi artist Fred Kabotie depict various aspects of Hopi mythology and religious ceremonies. The other murals done by Fred Greer are more subtle in color and purposefully softer in detail, and are copies of prehistoric pictographs and petroglyphs. The tiny windows of the tower let in a minimal amount of light that adds to the cave- like, mystical atmosphere of the space. Experiencing the multiple levels and circular balconies and the hundreds of prehistoric images inundates the viewer with an overwhelming sense of the southwest.