Cherokee artist Troy Jackson won the 2011 Trail of Tears Art Show grand prize with his pottery entry “Putting The Pieces Together.” This year’s exhibition at the Cherokee Heritage Center in Park Hill, Okla., features 155 art pieces from 93 Native American artists from 13 tribes. COURTESY PHOTO
Winners for 40th annual Trail of Tears Art Show announced
Cherokee artist Sharon Irla won first place with “Corn Mother” in the painting category for the 2011 Trail of Tears Art Show. This year’s exhibition features 155 art pieces from 93 Native American artists and runs through May 8 at the Cherokee Heritage Center in Park Hill, Okla. COURTESY PHOTO
PARK HILL, Okla. – The Cherokee Heritage Center have announced the winners of the 40th annual Trail of Tears Art Show with the grand prize going to Cherokee artist Troy Jackson for his work titled “Putting The Pieces Together” in the pottery category.
“2011 marked another great year for the Trail of Tears Art Show,” CHC Executive Director Carey Tilley said. “The art speaks for itself in demonstrating the strength, beauty and creativity of the Native American art world.”
The show and sale runs through May 8 and features authentic Native American art in one of Oklahoma’s oldest art shows. This year’s exhibition includes 155 art pieces featuring 93 Native American artists from 13 tribes.
Artists from federally recognized tribes competed in several divisions and categories, including painting, sculpture, pottery, basketry, graphics and miniatures. A special Trail of Tears theme category and a jewelry category were offered for the first time.
Thirty-five winners were named in nine categories and collectively took home $10,000. The winners were:
Grand prize: Troy Jackson, Cherokee, “Putting the Pieces Together,” pottery
Painting: Sharon Irla, Cherokee, “Corn Mother”
Sculpture: Darrell Smith, Cherokee, “Red Tail Hawk”
Basketry: Lisa Forrest, Cherokee, “Traditional Storage Basket”
Pottery: David Pruitt, Cherokee, “Fire Carrier”
Trail of Tears: Gary Wing, Cherokee, “Trail of Tears Water Crossing”
Jewelry: Fritz Casuse, Dine’ Navajo, “Caia Ring”
Graphics: Shan Goshorn, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, “High Stakes; Tribe’s Choice”
Miniature: Dan Horsechief, Cherokee/Pawnee, “Seeker”
The Bank of Oklahoma and the Chickasaw Nation sponsored this year’s art show. A complete list of the winners can be found at www.CherokeeHeritage.org.
LOCUST GROVE, Okla. – Since he was 8 years old, Cherokee Nation citizen Dave Standingwater has had an interest in archery and been fascinated by the flight of the arrow.
Growing up in the Snake Creek Community near Locust Grove, Standingwater learned about hunting from his grandmother, Maggie Whitekiller Standingwater.
His first hunting experience was at age 13, killing a deer with a bow and arrow his uncle made.
“I was hooked after that,” he said.
He said when times were hard and his father was unemployed, he helped out by hunting and providing for his family.
“It was rough times back then,” he said.
Years later, he became a nationally ranked archer in the Cabela’s Archery Shooters Association, competing across the United States and in national championship tournaments.
In 1991, he experienced his first archery outing when his son invited him to a 3-D archery range in Locust Grove. Though he hunted growing up, shooting 3-D targets proved a challenge.
“My first outing was terrible. I was so bad, and so I asked them if they (archery range) was open every weekend. So I went back. I started shooting and practicing,” Standingwater said.
He said he practiced at home for 20 minutes to 30 minutes a day, eventually entering local archery tournaments.
“I got to taking first, second and third place trophies and stuff like that,” he said.
In 1994, he joined the Cabela’s Archery Shooters Association tour and his first tournament was in Oklahoma City.
He began competing in out-of-state tournaments and racked up points to qualify for the championship tournament in Tennessee.
“At that particular tournament, there were like 2,500 actual shooters, and I shot the traditional way – stick and string,” he said.
He used a custom-made modern dual-purpose Black Widow bow.
He said competing nationally enhanced his archery skills against many high-level shooters.
“If you missed, your arrow was just gone. But in competition like that you didn’t miss, you just didn’t miss, he said.”
He competed until 2001. He never won a championship tournament but often placed second and third. One of the biggest highlights of his career was when a Cabela’s magazine recognized him as one of the top 10 traditional bow shooters in the nation during the 1999 tour.
“I started looking down that list there and my name was No. 7. I wore that magazine out showing people,” Standingwater said. “I just wanted to shoot. I never thought that I’d become in the top 10 bracket.”
Now at 74, Standingwater continues his passion for shooting, bow making and learning how to flint knap. He made his first bow out of bois d’arc, learned how to cut a stave (a trimmed rod of wood used to make a bow) and make bowstring from squirrel hide.
He studies to become a more “powerful” and “faster” bow shooter and said he is staying with the traditional way of shooting so that he has the knowledge to survive and provide for his family if he needs to.
“I’m a full traditional shooter. I don’t aim down the arrow. I don’t look at the string. I look at the place where I want to hit. That’s where I want the arrow to go and that’s what I’m looking at. So that’s as traditional as you can get. I think that’s a plus when you get out in the woods. A lot of times your shots are going to be quick,” he said.
He said he’s passing his archery knowledge to his family and compared his great-niece’s shooting to that of Robin Hood. He said the two often take nature walks and practice shooting rabbits and squirrels.
Standingwater said he’s retained what he learned from his grandmother, who was a midwife and knew how to gather plants for medicines. Through her, he also learned to fish and gather foods that are in season. “I learned a lot from my grandmother, (she) taught me a lot.”
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The Cherokee Speakers Bureau will be held Thursday January 12, 2017 from 12:30 - 4pm. We will meet in the Community Ballroom that is located behind the Restaurant of the Cherokee. All Cherokee speakers are invited to attend. If you want to bring a side dish or a dessert, feel free to bring it.
Come speak Cherokee and enjoy food and fellowship.
For further information about the event, please contact the Language Program Office: 918-453-5151, 918-453-6170, 918-453-5487.
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Congratulations to Cherokee Nation citizen Dana Parks from Brownsboro, Texas, for being the Cherokee Phoenix’s fourth-quarter giveaway winner.
On Jan. 3, Parks won beaded jewelry made by Native Uniques owner Samantha Barnes. The winning package consisted of a bracelet, necklace, dream catcher and earrings. Parks won it after Cherokee Phoenix staff members drew her name from approximately 170 entries.
Parks joins Nan Butler, of Wellston, Wauneta Wine of Columbia, Maryland, and Dale Easky of St. Clair, Missouri, as the 2016 Cherokee Phoenix quarterly giveaway winners.
Butler won four painted tiles by Cherokee artist MaryBeth Timothy of MoonHawk Art for the third-quarter contest. Wine won a carving by Cherokee sculptor Matthew Girty for the second quarter, and Easky won a knife by Cherokee knife maker Ray Kirk for the first quarter.
Entries can be obtained by donating to the Cherokee Phoenix’s Elder Fund or buying a Cherokee Phoenix subscription or merchandise. One entry is given for every $10 spent or donated.
The Cherokee Phoenix will hold its first quarterly drawing for 2017 on April 3 when it gives away a finger-woven belt made by Jules Brison of Waterspider Creations.
For more information regarding the giveaways, call Samantha Cochran at 918-207-3825 or Justin Smith at 918-207-4975 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on Waterspider Creations, visit <a href="http://www.etsy.com/shop/WaterspidercreaGifts" target="_blank">www.etsy.com/shop/WaterspidercreaGifts</a> or <a href="https://www.facebook.com/waterspidercreations/" target="_blank">https://www.facebook.com/waterspidercreations/</a>.
For more information on Native Uniques, go to Nativeuniques.com or call 918-214-0030.
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – In January, two traditional basket-weaving classes will be offered at the United Keetoowah Band’s John Hair Cultural Center and Museum.
Each class will have a two-day session with the first class taking place on Jan. 5-6 and the second on Jan. 19-20. All classes are from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
During the first class students will learn how to weave around a glass flower vase, and during the second class students will focus on weaving a basket and fitting it with a woven lid.
Cindy Hair, a Keetoowah Tradition Keeper and master basket weaver, will teach the classes. She has approximately 50 years of weaving experience, and her basketry is known around the country.
“I just love weaving baskets and love teaching basket weaving,” she said. “I want to keep it up and pass it on as long as I can.”
The classes cost $25 each with reed being provided. Students are encouraged to bring their own vase, but vases will be available for purchase for $2.
For more information or to register, call 918-772-4389.
BRIGGS, Okla. – For the past 65 years, United Keetoowah Band citizen and Cherokee National Treasure Dorothy Lee Ice has been loom weaving, an art form used to make items such as belts, scarves, headbands, bookmarks, bracelets and shawls.
Ice, of Briggs, became an employee of the Sequoyah Indian Weavers in the 1940s when she was 15 years old. She became interested in weaving after watching weaver Lucille Hair.
After a time, her curiosity brought her back to watch the loom weavers. Bill Ames, a man from New York who ran the SIW, approached Ice and asked if she would like to learn. She did not hesitate and was employed that day. Her first woven piece was a blanket.
“I just loved it when I first started. What got me interested, mostly, was (I) just got in there and started. I didn’t have to ask any questions,” Ice said.
She said loom weaving consists of using a wooden loom, stringing or threading a warp and using shuttles on the loom to create a design. Ice said she only uses four designs when weaving.
“I use plain weave, hit and miss, herring bone and diamond. That’s all I do,” she said.
Ice said SIW employees were paid by “piece work.” Once an item was completed John Ketcher, of the Sequoyah Vocational School and former Tribal Councilor, inspected it. He was able to spot a flaw instantly, and if it was not good, the weaver had to re-create the piece. Once items passed inspected, they were shipped to New York to be sold.
She said at the time, along with the Briggs weaving hall, there were weaving halls ran by Ames in Bull Hollow, Peavine and Jay.
Ice worked for the Briggs SIW until 1960 and again in 1964 until it was shut down because of robberies and a lack of weaving material.
She continued to loom weave on her own and only created made-to-order items. She said loom weaving remains the same as the art form has not evolved much from the time she started.
She became a Cherokee National Treasure in 1991 for her knowledge of loom weaving and said that meant she “better be learning more and teaching more.”
Ice, 81, now teaches classes at the Cherokee Arts Center in Tahlequah. The classes are commissioned through the Cherokee Nation.
“(Out of) the Cherokees, I think I am the only one that is weaving. I would like to pass it on, and all I want to hear from them (students) is ‘I learned this from so and so, and I taught so and so.’ That’s all I want to hear from them. I just want to pass it on. I don’t want it to die,” Ice said. “If they want to learn and I know it, and I am able to teach them, I would like to teach them. I think it would be important for them to learn all of the traditions so that they can survive if hard times come.”
Aside from loom weaving, Ice teaches reading and writing of the Cherokee language, her first language, and teaches others how to make shackles for stomp dances. As a UKB citizen, she also received that tribe’s Tradition Keeper Award for loom weaving in 2014.
She also worked for Briggs Schools for many years as a teacher’s assistant and bus driver. In her spare time, she likes to clog dance at the senior citizens center in Tahlequah.
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Cherokee Nation citizens Richard and Sheila Fields will host a grand opening of their new 4 Winds, 7 Clans Gallery at noon, Jan. 7 in Tahlequah.
A ribbon cutting will take place at 2 p.m., Jan. 5 at the gallery hosted by the Tahlequah Chamber of Commerce.
“4 Winds, 7 Clans Gallery showcases fine art by Cherokee National Treasures in addition to creations by up and coming Cherokee artists and craftsmen,” said Sheila. “All artists showcased in the gallery are of Cherokee descent, many are fluent in their Cherokee language, and each Cherokee artist brings their heritage to life through their individual talents and gifts which they pour into the design found in their art.”
She added that the Cherokee elders among the Cherokee National Treasures inspired the gallery and that is why they are featured within it.
“We are starting slow and we’re going to grow from there. We hope to add classes soon, a legacy for our artists,” said Richard. “If you are looking for authentic Cherokee art then you will find something to your liking in 4 Winds, 7 Clans Gallery.”
The gallery is located at 210 S. Muskogee and is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.