Feb 15, 2024 - Sports

Mardi Gras Indian Queen Tahj creates Super Bowl LIX logo

An image of Tahj Williams paused while sewing the Super Bowl LIX logo. She sits in front of a window and looks directly at the camera.

Tahj Williams designed the Super Bowl LIX logo just like she might create a panel for her Mardi Gras Indian suit. Video: Justen Williams; Still image: Courtesy of the NFL

A Mardi Gras Indian from New Orleans designed next year's Super Bowl logo, lending a touch of unique tradition to the biggest game in American sports.

Why it matters: It's the first time the NFL has ever collaborated with a local artist to create the Super Bowl logo, according to a social media post from the league.

  • New Orleans hosts Super Bowl LIX on Feb. 9, 2025.

What happened: Tahj Williams, who's also known as Queen Tahj, designed the logo for Super Bowl LIX in her own stunning beadwork style.

  • She sewed the logo directly onto a canvas frame similarly to how she'd create panels for her Black Masking Indian suit.

The logo is comprised of red and green whorls with touches reminiscent of a fleur de lis, and hints of pink along the Lombardi trophy.

What she says: "There aren't too many things in this world that can make me decide not to continue sewing on my new suit for 2024," she wrote in an Instagram post announcing the collaboration.

A pair of manicured hands hold a football, where the Super Bowl LIX logo is seen on one side.
New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Gayle Benson holds a football featuring the Tahj Williams-designed logo for Super Bowl LIX. Photo: Courtesy of the New Orleans Super Bowl LIX Host Committee

Zoom in: Williams is queen for the Golden Eagles Mardi Gras Indians, and she's known for her exquisite, singular beadwork style.

Be smart: Mardi Gras Indians, also known as Black Masking Indians, practice a centuries-old tradition in New Orleans with deep roots in the community.

  • The tradition's origins are a little murky, with some saying it honors the Indigenous tribes that offered safety to Black people upon their escape from enslavement.
  • Members of tribes across New Orleans spend all year sewing beautiful, custom suits, which they unveil at Mardi Gras as they sing and explore the city, showing off how pretty they are.
  • Indians typically wear the suits again on St. Joseph's Day, known as Super Sunday. Then, the suits are retired and they begin sewing again.

"Being a young Black woman in this culture is extremely important to me because this is a male-dominated culture," she said in that video.

  • "As I got into the culture more, I started to realize that we do way more than just stand next to our chief and be pretty."

The big picture: When New Orleans hosts the next Super Bowl, it'll be the city's 11th time hosting the game.

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