Ziindi: An Indigenous Art Zine and Pop-Up Gallery in Downtown Phoenix

Local artists Michelle Ponce and Damian Jim have collaborated on small works and projects since they met a couple years ago, but when the two connected over the concept of a simple, stapled art zine, they knew they'd started something longterm. 

This month, they launched Ziindi, a full-color zine dedicated to showcasing work by contemporary indigenous artists and providing a connection within the local community. 

"When we got together, we wanted to create something in which you could really see (in color) the details of each of the artist's work," says Ponce. "Plenty of native artists travel back to the Rez and they share their artwork here, but a zine is great way to offer something that will last a little longer to kids on the Rez and in the city. We hope it'll be something they can take with them and something that will inspire their own work."

Zindii is about 16 pages. It's full of work by local and regional artists including ARMZ, Averian Chee, Jeff Slim, Shamie Encinas, Damian Jim, Bahe Whitethorne Jr, Jeremy Arviso, and Thomas Greyeyes.

To Jim and Ponce, the first collection of artists is a group that's not being shown as much -- or not known as well -- as the more established contemporary artists in the community. 

Ponce says the eight artists were chosen because they're creating culturally influenced art with a "modern twist" that the local audience might not associate with Native work. She adds that the eight are also a great access point for young, aspiring Native artists to get involved in the community. 

The pop-up gallery's first show will open on Friday, March 2, and will be open through Art Detour (March 17 and 18) and the rest of the month.

For now -- while they raise funds for color printing and organize artists -- the zine will be a quarterly publication, with a run of 1000 to 2000 copies. 

For the next issue, Ponce says she and Jim are looking at Latino indigenous artists (Sentock and Ashley Macias are on her "wish list"), and focusing on telling their stories through influence and visuals. 

You can check out the zine online at or grab a signed, printed issue at the launch party on Saturday, March 3 from 6 to 10 p.m.. More info here

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Claire Lawton
Contact: Claire Lawton