July 23, 2012

Virgil Ortiz in New Mexico Magazine

Virgil Ortiz is featured in the latest issue of New Mexico Magazine. Their August issue is their 'Native' issue - you know, to coincide with SWAIA's major arts event, the Santa Fe Indian Market.

In this issue, Ortiz is spotlighted, and we get another glimpse at his career as an artist and fashion designer.

The author, Candace Walsh, explains:

"The black-and-white graphic patterns used on his figures and pottery are not merely decorative. Each motif is a Cochiti symbol: A sine-wavy line means water, groupings of vertical lines represent rain and kiva ladders, lines with spiraled ends represent creative force, and circles represent the sun, moon, and ova.

The wild spinach symbol depicted on his work (two overlapping leaves with a circle between two leaf points) is the plant used to make the black dye used on his pottery—and it’s his family’s signature. A decade ago, such imagery caught the eye of Donna Karan’s design director, launching a collaboration. In the spring of 2003, supermodels walked down New York’s fashion-week runways in smart frocks emblazoned with Cochiti prints."

“It gave me the guts to do my own line,” says Ortiz, 43. He introduced a line of leather outerwear, handbags, and scarves, while also creating more pottery. Ortiz also launched his own fashion line, Indigene, and a Made in Native America T-shirt collection (available online at the Beyond Buckskin Boutique).

Ortiz explains that his latest project, Venutian, is a futuristic mashup of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680 and a Star Wars–like epic drama, and will launch in Santa Fe during Indian Market. “It shows the Pueblo Revolt in a superhero kind of way. When I was growing up, we didn’t have those heroes to think about.”

Read the entire article here, and shop Virgil Ortiz fashion here.