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Artist / Writer / Curator | Art Matters Grantee

Demian DinéYazhi´ (born 1983) is an Indigenous Non-Binary 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 DinéYazhi´’s work is 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. Re/emerging from the havoc of the 2020, their practice contemplates societal, political, and environmental degradation, and calls into question the very colonial, capitalist foundations and structures that have reigned over art institutions that reside on stolen and colonized Indigenous Lands. They have recently exhibited at Biennale of Sydney (2020), Wexner Center for the Arts (2020), 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). They are the author of three books of poetry, Ancestral Memory (2018), AN INFECTED SUNSET (2018), and their most recent release, WE LEFT THEM NOTHING (2020).