Category Archives: News

Byting Willows – The Evolution of the Dine’ Basket

bytingwillowsOnlinePromoIn Southeastern Utah during the 70’s and 80’s a revival was occurring with a small group of basket weavers on Douglas Mesa.  The Black family became renowned for inspiring innovation and creativity into Dine’ basketry using Dine’ sandpainting figures/designs, Pima baskets, and Tohono O’odham basket designs.  This innovation led to Mary Black and her family receiving recognition, and a Governor’s Award from the State of Utah.

The revival was well in motion when Barry Simpson of Blue Mountain Trading Post in Blanding Utah, placed a request for a graphic designer at the local Job Service office.  A young Dine’ man replied, Damian Jim, and after several interviews, he started collaborating with Barry on Blue Mountains current store of ideas.  The initial sketches were made on drawing paper with a compass and a pencil.  These initial ideas are still in the archives of Twin Rocks Trading Post, which was at the time, a convenient location for basket and rug artists to come to sell their works.

After a time, the trading post invested in a Macintosh computer for creating the designs in a digital format.  The period of time for creating all the digital work spanned 9 years, during which many award-winning designs were created as well as articles, books, and several documentary pieces for tv and video.  This period in history included Damian striking out on his own and going back to school to get a degree in Computer Information Systems, and after a short amount of time, investing more time in his own artwork.

After starting up 1Spot Gallery in 2012, Damian and gallery manager Michelle Ponce, produced many amazing shows and collaborations, several awards and recognition from the downtown Phoenix art community.  It was during this time that Damian wanted to bring his experience working with the basket designs to fruition, and an overnight brainstorm session with Katja Lehmann, birthed Byting Willows.

The project is two-fold in that the initial introduction to the public will be a collaborative exhibit of master artists interpreting Damian’s designs and translating them into their preferred working medium.  The 2nd phase of the project involves a printed book with 100 of the best designs, as well as the collaboration project artists and their pieces, with a compendium of the additional 1400 designs in an iPad app available as a download.

The exhibit will open on Third Friday, February 20, 2015, from 6pm – 10pm at 1Spot Gallery in downtown Phoenix.  The grand opening of the exhibit will be on Thursday, March 5th, from 6pm – 10pm, and First Friday, March 6th, from 6pm – 7pm.  The same weekend March 8th, 9th, will be Art Detour, and the gallery will be open from 11am – 5pm.  As an added bonus, Paint Phx will also be happening during that same weekend, as well as the Heard Museum Indian Fair and Market.  Stop by for any of these events and share in the explosion of art that Byting Willows will be a part of in March.

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Santa Fe and the Ziindi Mobile

August is here already and if your in the know, you know your supposed to be in Santa Fe for SWAIA’s 92nd annual Santa Fe Indian Market during the week of August 12-18. This year, Ziindi will be there to represent the zine and to check out the gallery shows. There will be several notable shows that we want to showcase in this post.

First off we want to congratulate homeboy Jeff Slim, local valley favorite Thomas “Breeze” Marcus, and Cannupahanska Luger, for their show on August 14th. Blue Rain Gallery is known for featuring quality artist creations and your market week cannot be proper without seeing this show. This also gives us a chance to see the amazing potter Richard Zane Smith’s creations while we’re there.

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We’re also excited to see Winterowd Fine Art Gallery’s show “My Land” featuring a bevy of artists: Christine Nofchissey-McHorse, Joel C. McHorse, Douglas Miles, Chris Pappan, Amber Gunn Gauthier, Kathy Whitman-Elk Woman, Melissa Cody, Silvester Hustito, Melissa Melero, Brian Coffin, Jamison Chas Banks, and Max Early.

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This show will explore these artists ideas “around nature and the politics of land.” This event will feature conversations with the artists on Thursday, August 15th, 1-4pm, as well as poetry readings, demonstrations, and performances. The opening party will be on Friday, August 16th, 6-8pm.

Patrick Dean Hubbell’s work has exploded and this year he’s featured in a solo show at Darnell Fine Art, A Contemporary Art Gallery on Canyon Road. “Untitled” will feature various series and showcase Hubbell’s work. The opening event will be on August 16th at 5pm, and will continue until September 3rd.

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And for you fashionistas out there, we haven’t forgotten about you! Presence 4.0 will have a style mixer on Friday, August 16, 4-6pm. The event will feature music by Cloudface, so grab your fancy duds, put up your chignon, and prepare to mingle and converse with the new native fashion creatives.

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“One more thing,” we’re also proud to be a part of the Stripes magazine debut on Saturday, August 17th, starting at 7pm. The event will feature a mural unveiling, vip party and a public reception at 9pm. Ziindi will be there offering zines, prints, stickers, and our newly minted “Rez Deep” t shirts.

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We want to wish all the best to the people involved in these events and to all the artists participating in the market, and we hope to see you at one, or all of these events. Drop by, say hi, and support all these awesome artists as Santa Fe will be Ziindi-fied!

Welcome to Ziindi.com

This is Ziindi, an independent zine created to share art within the Indigenous community and youth.

Ziindi is an opportunity for the community to access Indigenous artists and their works. Together we affirm the richness of Indigenous arts and culture. Ziindi’s mission is to inspire the next generation.