Designing on the Edge: Exploring the Design Limits of Navajo Weaving

I really enjoy seeing weaving that pushes out the boundaries of design and helps to extend the audience of Navajo weaving.  One of the weavers who does this consistently is Mae Clark of the New Lands area near Sanders, AZ.  Mae’s work is seen exclusively at R.B. Burnham and Comany and I have the privilege of photographing it for the Burnham’s website.  I thought you might enjoy seening two of the tapestries that Mae did earlier this year, and which are already sold.  The rug below was inspired by the rainbirds of Pueblo pottery and Mae dyed the Germantown yarns herself to get the shading that she wanted.

This Mae Clark weaving was inpired by Pueblo pottery.

This Mae Clark weaving was inpired by Pueblo pottery.

Mae also completed another cutting edge weaving in March.  It was truly arresting to see it in the Burnham’s gallery.  You had to focus on the weaving to get the full impact of the design and not everyone liked it.  In fact, a couple of people called it “The Lips”.   The hooded figure represents a bereaved mother and the hummingbird represents a deceased child who has returned to say, in Mae’s words, “You made me what I am; I’ll be alright”.  Although I had no intention of writing about 9/11, it’s an appropriate weaving and thought for the day.

Mae Clark's weaving represents the spirit of a deceased child comforting its mother.

This weaving by Mae Clark represents the spirit of a departed child comforting its mother.

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