Born in Los Angeles of mixed Navajo (Diné) and Euro-American heritage, John Feodorov grew up in the suburbs of Southern California while making annual visits to his family’s land near Whitehorse, NM. The time he spent with his grandparents on their homestead near the Anasazi ruins at Chaco Canyon continues to inform and impact his work.
Feodorov is currently an Associate Professor of Art at Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies at Western Washington University in Bellingham Washington. He was also featured in the first season of the PBS series, “Art 21: Art for the 21st Century”.
Meaning and identity are two main themes that consistently inhabit my work. Several years ago, I visited the Anasazi ruins at Chaco Canyon, near my family’s land in New Mexico on the Navajo Reservation. This was in the 1980's, during the much-hyped Harmonic Convergence when people were gathering at numerous traditional sacred sites around the world. Along the inside perimeter of one of the large kivas, a group of tie-dyed spiritual enthusiasts formed a circle while sitting in lotus position. At the axis, they had erected a plastic totem pole, an object possessing no significance to native peoples of the Southwest. For me, their act, while well intentioned, seemed more an act of spiritual desperation than of connection--not to mention their obvious appropriation of Native American culture. It is this kind of sincere yet misguided event that both concerns and motivates me as an artist.
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