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"Germantown Eye-Dazzler" Rug

A work made of cotton and wool dovetailed tapestry weave.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of cotton and wool dovetailed tapestry weave.


c. 1800/90


Navajo (Diné)
Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah, United States

About this artwork

Brillant color and bold overall patterns with serrated diamonds, chevrons, and interlocking lines are hallmarks of the “Eye Dazzler” style of Navajo (Diné) textiles produced from the late-19th to the early-20th century. Earlier Navajo blankets featured broad horizontal bands of indigo blue, white, dark brown, black, and red, subsequently enhanced with the addition of small diamonds, bars, and squares. The lively approach of Eye Dazzler weaving developed out of a period of major cultural and artistic transformation beginning in 1864 when the U.S. government forcefully resettled the Navajo in the Bosque Redondo reservation. From the early 1860s, the Navajo received brightly colored commercial yarns as part of their U.S. government annuities. The new Eye Dazzler weaving also incorporated design elements characteristic of Mexican Saltillo blankets, which featured serrated diamonds and zigzag lines.

The creator of this blanket fully utilized the intense color of commercially dyed yarns and the Saltillo style to create a spectacular work. Internlocking serrated undulating lines appear to vibrate over the entire surface. The vivid interplay of red and orange hues with brillant blues, greens, yellow, white, and black produces an energetic, three-dimensional illusion.


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Navajo (Diné)


"Germantown Eye-Dazzler" Rug


New Mexico (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Made 1800–1890


Cotton and wool dovetailed tapestry weave


220.2 × 155.3 cm (86 3/4 × 61 1/8 in.)

Credit Line

Robert Allerton Endowment

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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