born in Shiprock, New Mexico, 1961, lived most of his life
around St. Michaels and Two Grey Hills area of the Navajo
Tsosie's parents were also Traditional Artists in their own right; his Mother, a noted Two Grey Hills rug weaver; his Father, a Silversmith and a Mason by trade. Tradition was always emphasized, however, his Mother felt her children should be able to cross the "bridge of cultures", so he was off to attend Government Boarding Schools from the age of six until his junior year of High School.
Upon graduation from Window Rock High School, Tsosie attended the Yavapai Community College in Prescott, Arizona, where he studied Commercial Art and an introduction to drawing and sketching from still-life, landscapes and live subjects . . . after Yavapai College he accelerated on to the University of Arizona at Tucson, where he further studied two and three dimensional design and studio art.
As time passed, Nelson's work became more sought after by Collectors and Galleries, until he was suddenly thrust into the World of Fine Art. Always yearning to stay close to his roots and maintain a healthy perspective, Nelson's work remains steeped in tradition, with a historical accuracy that can only come from a comprehensive love of one's own culture, and the people that represent it with such pride and dignity.
Nelson's works of art are showcased now in a bevy of Galleries, Museums, Hotels and Public Buildings Nation-wide. His Navajo Subjects radiate the warmth and adoration he feels for his people, and "people everywhere", that he wishes to share this vision with. Nelson places great emphasis on his desire to portray the positive aspects of Navajo Life. One looks at his works, and can see that not only has he accomplished this perspective, but he has also added a dimension to Native American Art: the understanding of light and depth, perspective, emotion, storytelling, and familial and cultural interaction.
Nelson and his wife, Valerie, reside in Arizona, where they travel frequently, participating in various art shows throughout the year. Come meet them at the Santa Fe Indian Market in August and the Phoenix Heard Museum Indian Art Show in March.
Valerie and Nelson Tsosie