Story Keeper

By Kristin Pazulski

Photography by Scott Dressel-Martin

Artist Melanie Yazzie has been creating paintings, sculptures and prints for years, pulling from her experience growing up in the Navajo Nation in Ganado, Arizona. Also an associate professor of art at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Yazzie has traveled extensively, and she makes it a point to visit schools when she travels, to introduce cultures to a real “Native American” to break the stereotypes.

While some of her work is created to educate people about her culture, her current exhibit at Denver Botanic Gardens, “Story Keeper,” on display until May 8, features pieces that are both reflective of her childhood and interpretations of the beauty she found in the Gardens.

Yazzie, who lives outside Boulder but often visits her family in the Navajo Nation, took time from her artist’s talk on March 10 to sit in the high-ceilinged Gates Garden Court gallery to chat about her work and “Story Keeper.”


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