Joe Yazzie being congratualated by Alaka Wali. PHOTO Courtesy: J. Brown Photography
CHICAGO — Joe Yazzie, a respected Navajo elder, was presented the Outstanding Citizen Leader Award by the Chicago Cultural Alliance at its annual MOSAIC fundraising event last Thursday, May 8, 2014.
Yazzie is a master artist who loves teaching community members to transfer knowledge from one generation to another generation. For the last 20 years he has worked to advance opportunities for Native peoples and people of color, through his art.
Yazzie is passionate about keeping the Native arts alive and has lent his talents to many community organizations — from teaching children digital
Resident Artist Joe Yazzie
design and oil painting to designing artwork himself for Native organizations to use as logos, booklets, art projects and more.
He is also Vietnam veteran, who is an organizer for the Native Veteran Group of Illinois. Yazzie is eagle feather staff carrier for the group.
“This was proud day in Indian country!” commented Joe Podlasek, the chief executive officer of Trickster Art Gallery. “He was among over 28 partner organizations that could have nominated leaders and he was one of two honored at MOSAIC.”
Yazzie serves as the resident artist at Trickster Art Gallery, which is located in Schaumburg, Illinois.
Trickster Art Gallery is Chicago Cultural Alliance core member. Yazzie was nominated by Trickster Art Gallery and chosen by the members of the Chicago Cultural Alliance to receive the Outstanding Community Leader Award.
The American Indian community drum REDLINE honored Yazzie and other awardees with an honor song at the MOSAIC event.