Melvin L. John

Melvin L. John

Painter, Sculptor

Melvin L. John is a Diné artist originally from Rainbow Springs / White Cone, Arizona. Currently, he resides with his wife and children in Tuba City, Arizona. His maternal clan is White Corn / Zuni-Edgewater Clan, born for the Black Streak People Clan.

“My Art emphasizes my strength and personality. It’s also a sense of calmness for me. My knowledge and respect for traditional Navajo (Diné) beliefs are evident of my work. I work with acrylic painting, metal sculpture and clay masks. I utilize abstract designs and a mixture of vivid colors, which are linked to my Navajo culture and way of life.

“My mother was my inspiration. She was a master rug weaver. Late into the night, she would tell stories and teachings of the Diné people. Her teaching led me to many heights in my life. My mom informed me that one day, my creativity will provide me an abundance in my life. I just had to respect my work, discipline myself, remain humble and never forget my people and origin. Much of my work reflects the Navajo stories and way of life, taught to me by my mother during my childhood. I was initiated into the Yei-bi-chei ceremony. My father was also a participant. It was then, that I witnessed the process of sand-painting. So that’s how I started painting The Ye-bi-chei’s. The Yei’s are the Navajo Holy God`s (deity`s), who heal the sick ones.”