Maricopa weaver Tiffany Yazzie will have her art on display at Maricopa Public Library this summer. She weaves in the traditional style of Navajo design and stories through the ages.
Yazzie was born and raised on the Navajo Nation in Northern Arizona. Her mother and grandmothers were her first teachers. Her mother showed her how to dress a loom by first creating a warp, setting up a heddle to separate the warp threads and then weave in the yarn. Her grandmother taught her how to care for the sheep and the goats, then to process their hair into yarn.
Her paternal grandmother, Suzie Yazzie, was renowned for her pictorial rugs and demonstrated daily for tourists, photographers and filmmakers from around the world.
Tiffany Yazzie is inspired by vivid color combination and how they interact with various Navajo weaving styles and techniques. She weaves fibers spun from sheep and goat hair into a vertical standing loom through the warp fibers that she strings by hand. These weavings or textiles take 30 to 200 hours to complete. Her designs are not drawn or sketched out before starting to weave. This for Tiffany is creativity being woven in the moment.
“This collection on display highlights a weaving style called the Eye Dazzler,” Yazzie said, “a weaving that stacks shapes in distinct colors leaving no gaps in between them. When gazed upon, the overall textile design dazzles the eyes. Unlike traditional eye dazzlers, I used gaps and shades of brighter colors to highlight the shapes repetitive pattern. This collection took about 300 hours to weave using 2,400 yards of spun wool and mohair.”
The display will be at the Maricopa Public library on Smith-Enke Road for three or four months.
This story appears in the July issue of InMaricopa.