Yazz - Navajo Painter by J.J. Brody, Sallie R. Wagner, and Beatien Yazz
Published in 1983.
From the Introduction:
THE NAVAJO PAINTER NAMED YAZZ is the subject of this book. He is, at once, known to many and unknown to most. Probably everyone who views his work experiences a sense of recognition and an affinity to his unique and sometimes quixotic creativity.
Yet, for one who has prolifically sold paintings to devoted collectors for almost fifty years, his reputation has maintained a curiously parochial flavor.
Yazz is only one of his names. There is his Navajo name, which we do not know. He has signed his paintings with many variations of Bea Etin Yazz: Beatien Yazz, Beatian Yazz, Beatian Yazzia, Beatin Yazz, and B. Yazz. Finally, there is the name that most people use, Jimmy Toddy.
Jimmy Toddy grew up in Wide Ruins, Arizona, on the Navajo reservation. He began his artistic career by chipping on the walls of the canyons in the manner of his ancestors. By the time he entered day school, it had become his habit to sketch the scenes that surrounded him. At ten, his art was exhibited in a Springfield, Illinois, museum. The die was cast; Jimmy Toddy was a painter.
Yazz: Navajo Painter explores the art and life of Jimmy Toddy from three perspectives: the viewpoint of Sallie Wagner, his friend and mentor, is offered in “The Stranger, My Friend”’ J.J. Brody, Director of the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico, provides a critical analysis of Toddy’s art in “The paintings of Jimmy Toddy (Beatien Yazz)”; and in “Reminiscences, “ Jimmy Toddy remembers important mileposts in his years of straddling the Navajo/Anglo world as a man and as an artist.
Personal wealth is secondary to Jimmy Toddy. His paintings allow him to share with others something that is very important to him—his Navajo heritage.