Scottsdale Native Arts Walk: Showing Off Their BestMarch 2, 2012 • By Mary Walker
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Scottsdale, AZ The Scottsdale Native Arts Walk, another event in the run up to this weekend’s Heard Museum Guild Indian Market, took place last night. Galleries all over Old Town Scottsdale were open and many had invited special guests to bring their own expertise to the festivities. I got there early in order to be able to get photographs without bruising people, but there were plenty of people there even at 6:30. At the brand new Waddell Trading Co., Jackson Clarke II of Toh-Atin Gallery in Durango, Colorado was hosting a display of Burnham style weavings by the Begay/Barber/Charley family of Burnham, New Mexico. Jackson had also brought along the absolutely stunning Teec Nos Pos weaving by Louisa Tom that you see above. It took Louisa over a year to weave it and she hand-dyed many of the yarns, some of them with Concord grape jelly and peyote buds. It is visually stunning and Louisa’s weaving skill is absolutely superlative. The weaving carried a price tag of $30,000.
The Burnham style rugs that Jackson had brought with him were also fantastic. I’m a real Burnham style enthusiast and I love to see what Sandy Begay and the other members of her family have been weaving. Burnham rugs are bordered rugs that have pictorial elements where you’d usually find geometric motifs. There’s more to it, but if I told you I’d be writing all day. Maybe I should do an online seminar on that and some other rare pictorial styles. Sandy’s beautiful Burnham style adaptation of the Yei Bi Chei design is shown below and features handspun Navajo-Churro yarns that Sandy and her family have dyed themselves.
I also spent quite a bit of time at the Old Territorial Shop and had a great chat with their guest Tyrone Campbell about the idiosyncrasies in antique weaving (like why are there four different shades of red in one of the rugs below?). Tyrone is an expert in antique Navajo, Pueblo and Hispanic textiles and is the author of several books. Old Territorial Shop owners Deb and Alston Neal always have a wonderful grouping of older textiles and last night was no exception. The two pieces below date back to the 1870’s and 1880’s, the period just after the Long Walk and are looking absolutely fabulous. Nothing but the best.
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I’ll be back late on Sunday with pictures from the Market itself, but it will probably take me a few days to get through what will need to be written about the weavers and their work. I’ll put up a new post each day until we’ve covered all of the weavers that I’m able to visit with at the Market. See you Sunday!
Hagoshíí (so long for now)