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Jared Yazzie, Better Future

Seven Generations 2020

Jared Yazzie
Diné
born 1989 Holbrook, Arizona; lives Tempe, Arizona
Better Future
2020
digital print
lent by the artist

Jared Yazzie, the founder of OXDX Clothing, created this design in response to the COVID-19 emergency on the Navajo Nation. Positive cases and deaths there spiked during the pandemic in part due to lack of access to running water. One way to kill the virus and stop its spread is through hand washing, but an estimated 30 percent of homes on the reservation do not have running water.

Moreover, air and water pollution from years of oil drilling and coal and uranium mining on reservation land contributes to the high rate of COVID-19 infection. For nearly two years, members of the Counselor Health Impact Assessment-Hozhogo’na’ada Committee monitored the air near oil well pads and found unsafe levels of particulate matter in the air. In April, public health researchers at Harvard University suggested that long-term exposure to these tiny particles may make COVID-19 symptoms worse and prove more fatal.