Under the Rainbow: The Tufted Rugs and Pictorials of Amy Begay

Amy Begay with her Tufted Churro Rug

Tempe, AZ  I have been meaning to introduce you to Flagstaff weaver Amy Begay all summer and as you may have noticed, I’m running out of days quickly.  Amy teaches in a bi-cultural school in Flagstaff and is also a prolific weaver.  She loves to do tufted pieces and had two of them when I saw her in June at the Museum of Northern Arizona auction.  Tufted rugs have locks of wool or mohair woven into them and as you can see, they have the appearance of a animal skin.  Historically, these textiles were used as for seating, bedding and believe you me, they are warm and cozy when it’s cold outside.  That’s right, you can sleep on your sheep and keep it too!  

One of the pieces that Amy had, the one in the picture above, was tufted with Navajo-Churro fleece.  Amy had woven the tufts into a brown and gray striped background.  The other piece was done with shiny, shiny mohair locks, much like those at the bottom of the weaving that Amy is holding in the picture below.  As you can see, Amy even carries her enthusiasm for tufting into the pictorials that she does.  Her subject matter often includes the rainbow, the San Francisco Peaks (the Sacred Mountain of the West to the Navajo) and trains.  This stunning pictorial received a lot of enthusiastic bidding!  Want to collect some of Amy’s work?  I’d suggest the Museum of Northern Arizona/Flagstaff Cultural Partners Auction on November 10!   Amy Begay with San Francisco Peaks Pictorial 

Hagoshíí (so long for now)

Mary Walker

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