Spirits Rising, an exhibition of my work, opens April 3 at Red Earth Art Center in Oklahoma City. This is wildly exciting for me so I hope you will bear with my exuberance. Installation day was Friday, March 31, and I thought you might enjoy a couple of “behind the scenes” photos.
Tooled Leather and Turquoise
My newest works are sculptural wall pieces, with texture instead of sgraffito, and inlaid turquoise – yummy! The oxide washes I use give the clay the look of tooled leather and a rustic feel that is totally different from my black and white sgraffito work. The series of female figures are called Spirit Sisters and the guys are called Warrior Brothers.
Let me introduce you to two of them.
Tvshka Homma (Red Warrior)
In 1861, the Choctaw Nation reluctantly sent more than a thousand warriors to fight with the Confederacy in the Civil War. They became known as fierce warriors.
Near the end of World War I, Choctaw soldiers were asked to use their native language to send coded messages about troop movements, battle plans, and supplies. They were the first Code Talkers.
Tvshka Homma means “red warrior” in Choctaw and is the capital of the Choctaw Nation (shortened to Tuskahoma by the Post Office).
Hollo (Feminine Essence)
In Choctaw culture, women were likened to Mother Earth. Givers of life and sustenance, they were revered. Family lines followed the female side, rather than the male. She was the property owner. When she died, her property did not revert to her husband, but went instead to her children and biological family. Even the children went to her family, not to her husband.
Choctaw women have been known pick up the weapons of a fallen husband in battle and continue the fight. They were tough!
Join Me for a Closer Look
If you’re in the area, I’d love for you to come to the Opening Reception on Wednesday, April 5, 5-7 pm at the Red Earth Art Center, 6 Santa Fe Plaza, Oklahoma City.
Come on down and bring a friend!