Calling All Native Artists! Our Biggest Wool Blanket Design Contest

Eighth Generation's 2021 Wool Blanket Design Contest is live!

Every week, we receive emails from highly skilled Indigenous artists interested in collaborating with us to design a wool blanket. As much as we are honored by this interest, we just aren’t able to say yes as often as we’d like to. In response to the high demand, the first wool blanket design contest was launched in 2017 and brought back again in 2019.

Now, the 2021 contest is our BIGGEST CONTEST TO DATE! See the details in the video below:

 
To recap, our 2021 Wool Blanket Design Contest will select three Native artists to design a blanket in one of three categories: A Warrior Blanket, an Elder Blanket and a People's Choice Blanket. Visit our 2021 Wool Blanket Design Contest page to learn more and to enter!
 

In the 2017 Blanket Design Contest, we produced two highly anticipated collaborations — the Tribute Wool Blanket with Jared Yazzie (Diné), founder of OXDX and the Confluence Wool Blanket with esteemed artist David Robert Boxley (Tsimshian). The 2019 Wool Blanket Design Contest produced one of our most popular blankets to date, the Remembrance Wool Blanket with Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy Tribe at Indian Township).

 

 
This striking Tribute Wool blanket by Jared Yazzie (Diné) pays homage to rug designs woven by his grandmothers. Within Navajo weaving, patterns originating from specific areas and colors of yarn dyed from particular plants give clues to where a rug has been woven.
 
“While my grandmothers are no longer with us, these patterns and colors remain to tell us the story of where they come from," Jared says. "I felt it was important to show tributes to their design through my new work. It makes me feel as if I am passing along their legacy.”

 

2017-contest-winner-David-Robert-Boxley
 

The beautiful Confluence Wool Blanket design by Tsimshian artist David Robert Boxley represents the powerful and inextricable connection between humans and the world around us. It also serves as a reminder of our responsibilities to care for it all.

"The salmon will only return if we are respectful and the earth will only allow us to stay if we live in balance with it," David says. "'Ni'nii wila loo łagigyedm ada 'ni'nii sgüü dm waalm. (That is what the ancestors did and that is what we should do)."

 

2019-contest-winner-geo-neptune
 
The Remembrance Wool Blanket by Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy Tribe at Indian Township) is based on the Wabanaki "tree of life" double curve, a motif that represents the circle of life and their creation story as Ckuwaponahkiyik, the children of Koluskap. With additions of floral symbols and designs to represent their clan (Wapikuhkuhkhahs – Snowy Owl), Geo created a mirrored style to illustrate the duality found within themself, within nature and within every person who sees the blanket. The rising sun has always held great significance for Wabanaki people – The People of the Dawn – and is reflected in the blanket’s colors.


"I hope that the colors of the blanket, the warmth from its wool, and the ancient-but-new-again designs remind all that Wabanaki people are still here, our languages are still intact, our cultures and people have survived, and "kmihqihtahasultipon" – we, collectively, remember,” Geo says.

Visit the 2021 Wool Blanket Design Contest page HERE and spread the word to family, friends and artists! You can also Shop By Artist on our website to see the additional work from artists like Jared Yazzie (Diné)David Robert Boxley (Tsimshian) and Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy Tribe at Indian Township)!