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From the Artist

The things that motivate me...

Portrait of the Artist I specialize in pottery and paintings which incorporate the graphic designs of the Mound Builders of the Woodlands and Mississippian Period. I feel these ancient people are part of my cultural heritage and I am dedicated to do what I can to honor them and to expand people's knowledge of their designs.

The designs on my pottery and in my paintings fall into two categories. Some are archeologically intact which enables me to reproduce them exactly. Others may only be partially documented which allows me to finish them out by adding features I feel remain true to the original design or which embellish the design without corrupting it. I have also beeng combining some of the designs to represent ancient Cherokee legends such as Raven Mocker and Dressed in Stone. I incorporate a color scheme for each design that follows my artistic flare and which is seldom, if ever, repeated for any single design, painting or piece of pottery. In other words, none of my pottery is "production" work and all of my paintings are originals.

To further individualize each piece of pottery I sign my name on the bottom and also provide a brief description of the design and list the mound site where it was discovered. I also include this information on the back of the paintings. In this way I not only provide some information the purchaser can use to explain the design to interested parties but I also use it to educate the public about the Mound Builders' culture. I have found this feature to be very attractive to buyers of my artwork.

My pottery is hand-thrown red and white low-fire earthenware. The low-fire clay body allows my designs to maintain their bright colors. I do not start out with a specific shape in mind when I throw a pot, only an approximate size. I let the clay determine the final shape which results in an unending variety of pieces to which I then match a design and color scheme.

Detail of Graphic Elements I first started showing my pottery at local arts and crafts shows in northwest Arkansas but quickly outgrew them. I began to inquire of Indian artists about better quality shows I could attend and have been attending those shows since 1994. This is now my thirteenth year of entering my pottery in juried arts competitions and I have won several awards which I have listed in my artist's biography.

My gouache paintings (gouache is a form of opaque watercolor) also incorporate the designs and motifs of the Mound Builders and this is the sixth year I have entered them into juried arts competition. I have already won several awards for my paintings which are also listed in my artist's biography.

I have also been the Featured Artist at the Five Civilized Tribes Museum in August of 1999, at the 2001 Creek Council House Indian Arts Festival in Okmulgee, OK, the 2002 Tulsa Indian Arts Festival in Tulsa, OK and the Gallery of the Plains Twenty-third Annual Indian Art Exhibition, Nichols Hills, OK, in 2004.

Sincerely,
Signature

Enrolled Member of the Echota Cherokee Tribe of Alabama A state recognized tribe that meets all provisions of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990, PL 101-644

 
 
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