Demian DinéYazhi´

Photo by Kali Spitzer

Demian DinéYazhi´ (born 1983) is an Indigenous Diné transdisciplinary artist born to the clans Naasht’ézhí Tábąąhá (Zuni Clan Water’s Edge) and Tódích’íí’nii (Bitter Water). Growing up in the colonized border town of Gallup, New Mexico, the evolution of DinéYaz´’s work has been influenced by their ancestral ties to traditional Diné culture, ceremony, matrilineal upbringing, the sacredness of land, and the importance of intergenerational knowledge.

Through research, mining community archives, and social collaboration, DinéYazhi´ highlights the intersections of Radical Indigenous Queer Feminist identity and political ideology while challenging the white noise of contemporary art.

They have recently exhibited at Portland Biennial (2019), Honolulu Biennial (2019), Whitney Museum of American Art (2018), Henry Art Gallery (2018), Pioneer Works (2018), CANADA, NY (2017); and Cooley Art Gallery (2017). DinéYazhi´ is the founder of the Indigenous artist/activist initiative, R.I.S.E.: Radical Indigenous Survivance & Empowerment. They are the recipient of the Henry Art Museum’s Brink Award (2017), Hallie Ford Fellow in the Visual Arts (2018), and Eiteljorg Contemporary Art Fellow (2019). Follow on Instagram @heterogeneoushomosexual

“Untitled (Sovereignty)” is a collaboration between Demian DinéYazhi´and artist Noelle Sosaya. The flag is inspired by Indigenous Diné American flag textiles and serves as a sacred object of peaceful protest and political distress in a colonized country. Courtesy: the artist and Cooley Art Gallery, Reed College. Photography: Evan La Londe
Demian DinéYazhi´, my ancestors will not let me forget this, 2019, glass, neon, aluminum frame. 106 × 56 × 58 cm. Courtesy: the artist and the Honolulu Biennial Foundation; photograph: Justen Waterhouse
The Landing of the Homophobes, 2016. Courtesy: R.I.S.E.: Radical Indigenous Survivance and Empowerment
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