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 Statement: In the work, a young and proud Indigenous woman looks up to her foremother, who smiles upon her. She is shedding tears, though a smile remains on her face. The two are surrounded by representations of the Oneida clan animals: a bear whose paws cradle the young woman’s foremother, eagles swooping along the frame of the canvas, a tortoise-shell pattern worn by the smiling foremother, and a wolf held by the young woman who is placed in the foreground. At the very bottom of the canvas lies a small group of sunflowers that rise in front of the wolf and the young woman. Behind the figures is a starry sky.