Navajo weaving exhibit on display Sept. 11–Oct. 16 in Wigley-Fleming Gallery

Sept. 14, 2009

“Weaving: The Story of Dine,” an exhibit of Navajo textile weavings, will be displayed in the Kristin Wigley-Fleming Gallery in the Center for the Arts.

The exhibit opens Friday, Sept. 11 and will remain on display through Friday, Oct. 16. The exhibit draws its pieces from the Navajo rug collection of Deborah Norland, professor of education at Luther College, and was collected over the last 30 years during her employment and travels on the Navajo reservation. Chad Landsman, museum studies instructor at Luther, aided with piece selection and set-up for the exhibit.

The Luther Galleries exhibit is open to the public with no charge for admission.

For over 400 years Navajo women have been weaving textiles for the use of their people and for trade with other Native Americans and Europeans. Demand and appreciation for Navajo textiles has made them a central feature in Navajo life and culture.

The exhibit provides an introduction to Navajo textiles and highlights their place in the culture and history of the Navajo people. It will focus on the textile as a manifestation of the Navajo way of life and a representation of the culture.

The exhibit includes 17 examples representing a range of traditional and contemporary designs. From the Two Grey Hills style to Storm patterns and contemporary Eye Dazzlers, “Weaving: The Story of Dine” seeks to share the beauty and harmony of these textiles and examine their symbolic importance to Navajo people.

Norland will be in the gallery on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 2:30-3:15 p.m. and 3:45-4:30 p.m. to discuss and answer questions about the exhibit. The sessions are open to the public and admission is free.

The exhibit coincides with a Conference on Norwegian Woven Textiles co-hosted by the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum and Luther College, Sept. 25-27. The conference will focus on symbolic forms in woven textiles, which are a leading characteristic of many Navajo weavings.

Conference activities and sessions will take place in the Luther College Center for the Arts on Sept. 26. For more information on the conference contact Laurann Gilbertson at the Vesterheim Museum, telephone 563-382-9681.