Indigenous Artist Spotlight: Yuè Begay
Updated: Jun 27, 2022
June is PRIDE month, and we are delighted and honored to spotlight the very talented, Yuè Begay. Read on to learn more about her inspiration, artistic style, accomplishments and where you can go to support/purchase/commission her work!
Name: Yuè Begay!
Please introduce yourself:
Yá’át’ééh shik’is dóó shik’é dóó shidine’é. Yuè Begay yinishyé. Naakai Dine’é nishłį́. Kinyaa’áanii bááshishchíín. Dibéłzhiní da’shicheii. Tábąąhá da’shinálí. Ákót’éego t’áá diné asdzáán nishłį́. Ákót’éego t’áá nádleehí nishłį́ ’ałdó’. Kinłání Dookʼoʼoosłííd Biyaagidi shiʼdizhchį́. K'ad Indigenous Pride LA biCo-Chair nishłį́. Freelance Graphic Artist dóó Consultant nishłį́ ’ałdó’. Public Healthígíí bá naashnish. California State University State, Long Beachdę́ę́’ niniłtááh. K’ad Tovaangardi kééhasht’į́ ndi Tódí Néesh Zhee’dę́ę́’ naashá.
"Hello my friends, family, and my people. My name is Yuè Begay. I am of the Nomadic People Clan, born for the Towering House Clan. My maternal grandfather is of the Black Sheep Clan and my paternal grandfather is of the Near the Water’s Edge Clan. This is how I identify as a Navajo transgender woman. I was born in Flagstaff, AZ. I am a Co-Chair of Indigenous Pride LA. I work as a Freelance Graphic Artist as well as a Consultant. I work in the Public Health field. I graduated from California State University, Long Beach. I currently live in Los Angeles, CA but am originally from Kayenta, AZ. (Navajo Nation)"
Q: What does being a member of the Two Spirit & LGBTQ+ community mean to you?
A: Two Spirit is about reclamation of identity, culture, and lifeways. A stronger continued connection or reconnection to our Indigenous roots and foundations.
As a trans woman, I am a blessing to my chosen family and friends and an inconvenience to my disconnected family and peers and politicians.
Q: How has it shaped your art?
A: Being nádleehí, Two Spirit, Indigiqueer, and transgender informs my art all the time. My culture and experience guides my choices in shapes, lines, textures, colors, hue, tint, tone and shades.
Q: What is your favorite medium?
A: My favorite medium has to be digital art, especially vector art and photoshop. I love to shape a snapshot of reality (a photo) and warp it to my desires and add my desires to it (via vector art or photoshop).
Q: Who/what inspires you, your art?
A: Other Native artists both contemporary and traditional historical figures in my tribe.
Q: What accomplishment(s) are you most proud of?
A: One of my biggest accomplishments in my life is creating logos for people, businesses, and organizations. I love to help assist in putting into reality what my client envisions for their organization and business.
Q: 2022-2032 is the official Decade of Indigenous Languages, what is your relationship with language? How has it shaped you?
A: I am a fluent speaker of Diné Bizaad (Navajo language) so a vast majority of my ideals and paradigm (world view) is shaped by it.
Q: What does PRIDE represent to you?
A: PRIDE as it exists now is a double edge sword for Two Spirit, Indigiqueer, and Indigenous Trans and Queer folks. On one hand, it does give us a space, both homegrown or artificial, to express ourselves away from the impacts colonization has had on our tribes. At the same time, these spaces can also be a place of great pain and suffering if you are to express your indigeneity and not uphold settler colonialism.
Where can people buy your art/follow & support you?
Keep checking at my store via yuebegay.com (website under maintenance until TBA) and following me at Facebook @yuebegay.art and IG: @yuebegay.art & @asdzaa_tleehonaaei