Northern fair poster artist opts for new image

Girl posing with poster art.

Navajo Times | Donovan Quintero
Shiprock High School senior Shayleen Tom poses with her artwork that was selected by the 106th annual Northern Navajo Nation Fair to be the main art Sept. 27 in Shiprock.


The 106th Northern Navajo Fair poster will be a bit different compared to those that have come before it.

The depiction of yéii bicheiis, which is usually the popular subject the past poster artists since the Northern Navajo Fair is also seen as the unofficial start of the yéii bicheii ceremonial season, will not be the pivotal image on this year’s poster.

Instead, Shiprock High School junior Shayleen Tom has a different take on what she believed should be illustrated to represent the Northern Navajo Fair.

In her drawing, Tom drew a young girl dressed in traditional wear, sitting in a Navajo basket, surrounded by vegetables and corn stalks.

The northern fair is also when the first yéii bicheii ceremony is held in conjunction with the fair itself. Tom didn’t stray too far from the theme – a yéii bicheii image is included in the background of the poster.

“I noticed in the old posters it was always the same thing, with the yéii bicheiis, so I decided to do something different,” said Tom in a phone interview.

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Categories: Community

About Author

Arlyssa Becenti

Arlyssa Becenti reports on Navajo Nation Council, Business, Fort Defiance Agency, New Mexico State politics and Art/fashion. Her clans are Nát'oh dine'é Táchii'nii, Bit'ahnii, Kin łichii'nii, Kiyaa'áanii. She’s originally from Fort Defiance and has a degree in English Literature from Arizona State University. Before working for the Navajo Times she was a reporter for the Gallup Independent. She can be reached at