Earliest Navajo weavers developed their talent through skills learned from the Pueblo people. Their blankets were greatly traded throughout the Southwest, and became prized possessions of tribal leaders of the Plains and Plateau. Eastern visitors to the Southwest developed a demand for larger versions as rugs, and trading posts engaged weavers to fill their orders. Woven into their designs were reflections of their environment, spiritual insights and meanings, and inherited patterns. Designs and colors sometimes took on a southwestern Spanish influence. Always one-of-a-kind, always an intricate message told within a complex thought process, Navajo textile excellence has endured in the people, despite times of oppression, starvation, removal, and reservation relocation. The renaissance of this art is on-going, re-vitalizing itself with 21st century weaving talent.
The Navajo Art stamps are the sixth issue in the American Folk Art series. Designer Derry Noyes based each of the four stamp designs on an actual Navajo weaving. Issued in Window Rock, Arizona, September 4, 1986.