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Susan Hudson - honoring her ancestors

Susan Hudson is a member of the Kin Ya’áanii, or Towering House clan of the Navajo Nation, of Sheep Springs, NM. She is a descendent of the prominent leader Narbona, and grandniece of Master Weaver Mary Ann Foster.

Susan Hudson

Lissa Claffey photograph


She has created a new quilt form that incorporates the style of Ledger art into story quilts of Navajo hardship and loss. These pieces go beyond tribal, resonating as shared experiences by many other Native American communities.


Susan Hudson, 29 Warriors

Denise Kang photograph


Susan's mother, Dorothy Woods, taught her to sew and quilt when she was nine years old. “After the buffalo disappeared, our women were forced to learn sewing in boarding schools. But look at what we are doing with it now. We are taking it a step further and using it to tell our own stories so we will never forget,” remarks Hudson.


Susan Hudson at her sewing machine

Denise Kang photograph


“In my dreams I’ll see images of my ancestors. I think about them being forced to leave their homelands and go to reservations and the children being made to go to the boarding schools. I think about the Long Walk of the Navajo.”

Susan Hudson, 29 Warriors

Denise Kang photograph



Susan Hudson, 29 Warriors

Denise Kang photograph


". . . everything goes to them - all the praise, everything. I've been here telling their stories because I don't want my ancestors, my grandmas and my mother's voice to be closed."

Susan Hudson, The Indigenous Children Want to Know Why

Denise Kang photograph


Her quilts honor her ancestors, their sacrifices and strengths, and remember their hardships. These tributes have won awards at the Navajo Nation Fair, Window Rock, AZ, the Gallup Intertribal Ceremonies, NM, the Museum of Man in San Diego, CA, and at the Indian Arts and Crafts Association, NM, among others.


Susan Hudson with her quilt, 29 Warriors

Lissa Claffey photograph


The source for today's blog is Craft in America.


Craft in America

8415 W. Third St. Los Angeles, CA 90048 (323) 951-0610

Open Tuesday-Saturday, 12-6pm

The Craft in America Center a micro-museum, library, and programmatic space where visitors engage directly with art, artists, and ideas. We give voice to traditional and contemporary craft, ranging from functional to purely conceptual, through personal engagement. We organize exhibitions, artist talks, scholarly lectures, a reading group, book signings, hands-on workshops, demonstrations, student field trips, concerts, and publications.


If you're in the area - AN EXTRA BONUS . . .

Quilt Share Live!

March 7, 2020 at 4:00-5:00pm

Time to dig out your quilted heirlooms and head to the Craft in America Center for our own spin on Antiques Roadshow!

Quilt experts, artist Joe Cunningham and curator Julie Silber, will lead an on-the-spot analysis of audience members’ quilts made before 1960. Cunningham and Silber will give as much information about each quilt as can be gleaned including, date, region, pattern name, condition and more. They will also present a selection of antique quilts and a few of Cunningham’s own creations. Join us and learn more about the treasures in your own home!

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