Thank you! Yes!! Kee Yazzie is of the Hopi and Navajo tribes, and he draws inspiration from the petroglyphs in the canyons near his home in the American Southwest. This is considered a "storyteller" piece. At the top is a storm cloud ("k'os") symbolizing change, renewal, and fertility. The weather is constantly changing and the power to adjust accordingly is important. Also, the production of water for sustenance is essential to life. Next there is a bear ("mato"), which represents a spiritual guide, symbolizing introspection and self-knowledge. The kiva steps represent the "staircase of life" and the different steps we take in overcoming obstacles. The 2 figures represent the "ancient ones" or Navajo ancestors, which were the Anasazi people. The migration spiral symbolizes the route the ancestors took across the Bering Strait to the Americas. Then we have a dragonfly, which represents adaptability, as these creatures are at home on land, in the sky, and in water. We have some repeated symbols and then, lastly, a cross, which represents life's journey and our paths crossing.
Fun fact (or not so fun fact): The swastika was a symbol originally used by Native Americans as a sign of friendship and good luck. Of course, the Nazi party adopted (and desecrated) it in the 1920's. Natives swore to never use it again in their textiles, pottery, or jewelry.
Apologies for the book! I just find this all so fascinating.
Wow this is amazing! Love a piece that tells a story!!