(Seattle, WA) Since 2008, Eighth Generation, the first Native-owned and run company to ever produce wool blankets with a flagship retail store in Seattle’s iconic Pike Place Market, teamed up with #Two-Spirit community member and artist Ryan Young to create a wool blanket prominently featuring a Two-Spirit inspired motif.
Ryan Young is a proud member of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. As a Two-Spirit artist specializing in photography and printmaking, Young recently graduate from Santa Fe based Institute of American Indian Arts. Two Spirit representation and empowerment is central in both Young’s artwork and community work.
Eighth Generation put a call out for Two-Spirit artists for their “Inspired Natives Project.” This initiative was launched in 2014 and aims to offer community-based artists business skills development and mentorship to build their business capacity to distribute artwork globally. Young answered that call and partnered with Eighth Generation and now is honored to offer a blanket design inspired by Young’s community’s traditional story about (rainbow) crows.
The story goes that the crow was once very colorful and had a beautiful singing voice, but during a forest fire, it spent so much time trying to help the other animals that its colorful feathers became blackened with soot and its beautiful singing voice turned hoarse from the smoke.
The teachings from this story for Young is this story reflects the all struggles and sacrifices made by a Two-Spirit people to get to where they are today. The blanket mirrors the story, as one side features two brightly colored crows while the other side the two crows are all black.
This 100% New Zealand Wool, two sided, Two-Spirit wool blanket comes in a queen size (no pun indented) with the overall dimensions of 200 cm x 150 cm and retails at $208, with 5 percent of the proceeds going toward the program for emerging arts entrepreneurs.
To order one online, go to https://eighthgeneration.com/products/two-spirit-wool-blanket.