It is with great pride that we share the exciting accomplishments of two members of our extended Toh-Atin Gallery family!
Two Saturdays ago, Monique Holiday, daughter of painter Leland Holiday, graduated from the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe with a bachelor’s degree in Studio Arts and, on May 13, Trinity Begay, son of weaving artist Laverne Barber-Begay, earned his master’s degree in social work from New Mexico Highlands University.
Monique has already been accepted for the 2023 Santa Fe Indian Market and plans to continue her education and become a teacher. It was not an easy accomplishment for this young woman. She worked multiple jobs, sold artwork, and studied both in Santa Fe and virtually during the pandemic. She would not quit in her quest for this diploma. Monique has a bright future as an artist, and her students will have a great teacher.
Trinity has been working with programs on substance abuse, addiction and helping people reclaim their lives. Both he and Monique are dedicated to giving back, and we congratulate them for their achievements.
Trinity requested a special graduation present from his mom and shared his feelings about it with us.
"I am deeply honored to own one of my mom's rugs. I asked my mom to add important parts of the family culture: horse, cow, and sheep. Lastly, I wanted a symbol of the strength of our family, which is the women and their gift of weaving. The lady is my grandma, Anna Mae, and I always remember her weaving style. I was always fascinated with the Chiefs blankets my mom made, and that is why I requested the rug because when my grandma passed, we never thought about keeping one of her rugs in the family. Since I started college, we did lots of assignments on culture which involved understanding my family history, and I always took my culture for granted. As I began talking with my mom about our origins and family history, I realized how important it is to preserve my family history and culture for my son. I am quickly realizing that my family's artistic history is coming to an end in the next generations, which is heartbreaking because these rugs were what raised me. I hope you are blessed by this picture, JC, and want to know that I am grateful for your business and your admiration of my family's works of art."
We are very proud of these young people and look forward to following their lives as they move forward!