Wyandot Potter

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Brothers

“Brothers” refers to the Wyandot creation story which was passed down orally since ancient times. Only recently has this tradition been interrupted by cultural contamination. Those who love ancestral ways are relearning the story and planting the seeds of renewal by teaching the story to the next generation. This piece illustrates the narrative of the primeval duel between the twin brothers, good creation and evil destruction.

This photo was taken in Wyandotte, OK in front of Uncle Richards kiln in which it had its final firing. The firing was part of a very productive trip. In a weekend we fired this pot, finished my hack-berry long-bow, attended the Seneca Cayuga social dance and visited with family and friends. At the end of the weekend I brought this and three other pieces to Lovett’s gallery in Tulsa who quickly found homes for them within the following week!

Tree Bark Stamp Vessels

This series represents the integration of a new element into the traditional style. The stamps for these pieces where made by pressing clay into living tree bark and then dried and fired. The vessel forms were then made in the traditional style. In ancient times pottery was stamped using this technique for decoration as well as to enhance the structural strength of the vessel. I see tradition as something that is alive in a similar way that a tree is alive and is strong and gives fruit. If we could communicate more deeply with the trees that are almost invisibly surrounding us we could see a lot more than what we always see when we look on the surface. To illustrate this I attempt to visualize a communication that happens on a more elemental, cellular level. We are related to the rest of the living world around us as our ancestors related to the ancestors of the trees in our environment. These arboreal ancestors are much older than human culture and have informed us from the beginning. I am thankful for the tree’s nature, constantly outstretched giving glory to the Creator.

Rebirth Maple Leaf Cross Design

This is a new piece that I made for Indian Market in Santa Fe 2011. This spring I stared at the new growth on the maples and found a four directional balance to the generation of new leaves. The stamp was the most intense part of making this piece. It was fitting that the chunk of wood that I found for carving was a piece of birds-eye maple. I really enjoy making stamps that have crazy edges as they always make interesting negative spaces.

Abundance

This piece I made last fall after the oak trees had a “mast” year. There were huge acorns everywhere.  It was amazing to see the vast quantities of these life bringing expressions. I dedicate this piece to the white-tail deer who feeds on these and feeds us with her beauty.

Twin Castellated Kettle

Twin Castellated Kettle

This Native Clay vessel refers to the Wyandot creation story.

Anasazagama

Here is the kiln project that I started this spring. I fired a couple of pots in there and they turned out great. It always goes better when my little buddy helps me fire.

Now the pots are arranged and ready to brick up the door and start the fire!

Here are the finished results.