June 23, 2012

Artist Profile | Jared Yazzie of OxDx

Jared Yazzie (Navajo) is the artist behind the Native-owned and operated clothing company OxDx. He has created every design in the OxDx collection (except "Reflection"), and operates as the illustrator, artist, graphic designer, photographer, and screen printer.

Yazzie explained, "Being able to print my own shirts is something I take a lot of pride in." OxDx tees depict American Indian struggles, issues, and art. OxDx is strongly influenced by Native culture, street art, and music.

The OxDx logo is a depiction of youth, art, rebellion, and how we view the world. The OxDx boy wears a traditional headband with "OVERDOSE" written across it, his face is covered by a respirator mask - a symbol for graffiti, of splashed paint, of the street - a symbol that everything should and will be made into art... but it is also a symbol for the lack of air, its a way to breathe through the poison.

OXDX believes society has been consumed with false worldly virtues and has lost its culture. Everywhere we see people O.D.ing not only on drugs but on greed, self appearance, and possessions. OxDx strives to make art for the people to remember where we came from and to not forget the teachings of elders. Regaining lost traditions is a task for the up and coming generations.

Another cool shirt design by OxDx is this one which begs the wearer to honor a war hero today and everyday. The photo credit for this tee goes to Samuel Holiday, a Navajo Code talker who's home was lost in a fire. OxDx is teaming up with a group of people to raise money for rebuilding the house.

Uncle Scam wants you. In this tee, OxDx takes a critical look at Manifest Destiny - the belief of American expansion. Even if that expansion involved genocide, colonization, and assimilation to a population of people already settled to the land. Don't believe the history books.

He started his business in Tucson, at the University of Arizona, but now he is based out of Chandler, AZ. View more OxDx tees here.