1920 - 1940's
25 1/2 x 29 1/2" OVERALL
Navajo textiles are among the most widely recognized indigenous art forms of the Southwest. Weaving practices in the Four Corners region date back to the 10th century. While many early blanket examples functioned to protect the wearer from environmental overexposure and to signal social status, the style represented here reflects a later transitional stage in Navajo textile making. Bold color combinations featuring red dyes and intricate geometric designs tend to characterize this phase of production, which gained initial popularity around the mid-to-late 1800s. The market for such items expanded significantly during the late 19th century due to Anglo-American consumption. In order to meet heightened demands, Native artisans began importing alternative materials such as synthetic dye and prefabricated yarn from Germantown, PA. This blanket, which features zigzag and terrace patterns, was likely used as a rug or wall hanging to decorate the interior of a home.
F. May Young Collection, given by Luella D. Saxby
Maker unknown, “Maker unknown,” UCSB ADA Museum Omeka, accessed September 30, 2022, http://art-collections.museum.ucsb.edu/items/show/6365.