Ye'ii Tapestry

Maker and role
Maker: Navajo, Native American
ca. 1920-ca. 1930
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Object detail

61 x 92in (154.9 x 233.7cm)
Credit line
Bequest of Marion Koogler McNay
Accession number
Further information
Called Ye'ii, the front facing figures shown here are supernatural beings closely connected spiritually to the Navajo people and their natural environment. The Ye'ii, or Holy People, help maintain all aspects of Navajo daily life.
The figures are derived from Navajo ceremonial sandpaintings. During a multi-night ritual the Navajo draw upon the healing powers of the Ye'ii to restore balance and harmony to an individual, a family, or a community.
At the end, a design made of sand and crushed minerals is created on the ground. After its use, the sandpainting is destroyed and the material returned to the desert.


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