Artist Bio: Yá’át’ééh. My name is Peyton Alex. I am from Teesto, a small community located on the Navajo Reservation. I am a self-taught illustrator and painter. I am also a second-generation silver smith. I am able to learn from mentors around the Navajo reservation, including my grandfather. I really enjoy learning from the older generations because they teach me art techniques while teaching me valuable life lessons to tie with it. I am thankful to the artists that help me and guide me the right way.
Artist Bio: Mercedes Danforth is an artist whose medium spans from charcoal to acrylic paint, specializing in portraiture. Her inspiration stems from the cultures of each of the tribes that she descends from, especially her relatives who have leant her their passion for music, design, storytelling- as well as their own spiritual beliefs. She is currently on gap year, awaiting her junior year of college as she builds her portfolio, she plans on attending art school after graduation.
Artist Bio: Kk’odohdaatlno se’ooze’, this is how I say my name in my language Denaakk’e; it translates to strong or sharp speaker/communicator. Maneelghaadze T’oh (Koyukuk, Alaska) is the village I am from. Dgheyay Kaq’ lesdo, I was born, raised and currently reside on the unceded territory of the Dena’ina Peoples, known as Anchorage, Alaska. My cultural and ancestral background spans the west coast from Alaska to Mexico, I am Den’a and Chicana. My main roles in my community have been community organizer, care-taker, earth warrior, and student. Storytelling, dancing, writing, rapping, singing, sewing, and creating mixed-media art are my main outlets as an artist. I flow between artist and muse for my artist friends. I create art as a way to heal, to express the things I learn as I dive deeper into my relationships with people, plants, animals, cultures, and the universe. I hope to continue making art for the rest of my life to add beauty to my life and to tap into my imagination for personal self-transformation and healing. This is the first contest I have submitted to in a long time, I am very grateful for the prompt and opportunity to participate. Enaa Baasee’ – Muchas Gracias – Quyana Cakneq.
Artist Statement: This art piece was originally made in June when a friend invited me to do a test run of their workshop they had to give over zoom. They were contracted by the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women, an Indigenous organization based in New Mexico. The workshop was just a test run. Although it was not the official workshop, which was titled “Virtual Zine Workshop with Keioshiah Peter”, I did get to make a zine. My zine is not entirely finished, but I do have the first three pages done which I am contributing to this contest. The prompt or theme of the zine fits exactly with this prompt. As described from their Instagram post, “create a zine for your relatives, peers, and/or community on ways to be a good relative, especially during this of COVID-19 and voices demanding for justice and change”. While creating this, I was thinking of the transition from spring to summer, and the plants that were coming out in the south central and interior parts or Alaska, as it was June, and I love gathering plants as food and medicine. The flower is an arctic rose, I pick the petals for tea and make jam, and sprays. I was thinking of mutual-aid networks. Furthermore, another motif of this piece is my exploration of being Queer and Indigenous, and how important it is to have healthy relationships across all relations, especially developing healthy boundaries and open communication. I was also thinking of social and racial justice, and how important developing deep relationships with allies is important. The photos should be judge in the order of the title page “How to Be a Good Relative”, page two and three have the flower, the third photo has pages 4 and 5, where I have a list of Tina (my nickname) demands which answer the prompt, “How do you want others to show up for you, your community, movement, and/or Native Nation”. The dimensions of the zine when closed is 3 inches wide, 4 inches tall, and when open it is 5 1/2 inches wide. There are no publications or photos on the internet of my zine. This is the first time I am submitting it anywhere. Thank you again for considering my submission.