The Oklahoma Center for the Humanities’s exhibit, The Work of Sovereignty, will run March 3-April 22 in our new space, 101 Archer. This exhibit was developed with contributions from several local, indigenous artists. Below, you will find their biographical information.
Lead Artist and Co-Curator
Carly Treece is a citizen of Mvskoke Nation and of Cherokee ancestry. She is a multidisciplinary artist, community advocate, volunteer, gardener, and mother. She works in multimedia with a focus on cold wax and oil. Currently, her artwork is focused on abstract Native landscapes that explore the physical, emotional, and spiritual connection between land and Native people. She continues to be an advocate for land and body sovereignty.
Kalyn Fay Barnoski (Cherokee Nation, Muscogee Creek descent) is a songwriter, musician, interdisciplinary artist, curator, and educator from Oklahoma. Centering Indigenous methodologies, their work focuses on self-location, community-building, collaboration, and empathy through the use of music, storytelling, and contemporary craft. They facilitate space for themselves and others to pursue multitudes. Kalyn holds an M.F.A. from University of Arkansas (2021), an M.A. from The University of Tulsa (2016), and a B.F.A. from Rogers State University (2012). Kalyn is currently an NACF LIFT Fellow, an MAAA Artist Leadership Fellow, and the Assistant Curator of Native Art at Philbrook Museum of Art.
Shane Brown is a Cherokee photographer and cinematographer. He specializes in documentary and experimental photography. In addition to his ongoing projects and freelance work, he is also the on-set still photographer for FX’s Reservation Dogs. His pictures and cinematography work have been featured by organizations as varied as Bob Dylan Archive, Smithsonian Magazine, the New York Times, and the First Americans Museum.
Britteny Cuevas started Four Locv, a company that seeks to cultivate Native American, Southeastern Indigenous art by educating and providing cultural, lesson-based activities. Four Locv offers interactive labs in which Britteny’s patrons can learn to weave baskets, make moccasins, create corn husk dolls, and to do many other engaging activities.
Kristin Gentry is passionate about using her art to create different ways to preserve her traditional Southeastern tribal culture of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She uses her art to educate and restore the beauty of her people’s journey to where they are as Chahta Okla, Choctaw People, today. She is a writer, curator, painter, printmaker, and photographer. She often photographs families in their tribal regalia and creates designs and patterns from traditional clothing in her painting and prints.
Jessie Haase (an enrolled Cherokee) is a self–taught writer, poet and creator. Born in Oklahoma, by way of small towns in the far corners of Kansas. Mother of two, semi–grown beings still trying to make sure they find a way in the world while maintaining kindness, tact and their sense of humor, and wonder. Always grieving. And missing my Mama, Janie. BUT Doing what I can to honor her and make her proud. Wherever she is…
Haley Madden is an Osage/Comanche artist, specializing in painting and beadwork. Her Osage name is Wah Zha Zhi Me Tsa He, which translates to Osage Sacred Sun. This name is the first daughter’s name for her deer clan people. She lives in Bartlesville with her three children and fiancé. She is extremely proud of her Native Oklahoma and New Mexico heritage.
Travis Mammedaty is a Kiowa/Seneca-Cayuga contemporary expressionist artist hailing from Oklahoma, now residing in the center of the Navajo Reservation in Chinle Arizona. His mediums of choice are acrylic and charcoal. He has showcased his work in museums and galleries throughout Native America. Travis is also a Kiowa language instructor and historian.
Brittany Postoak is a Mvskoke citizen and has a long history of family residing in Indian Territory. She works with traditional art such as beadwork and leather crafting as well as watercolor and acrylic paint. She expresses her appreciation for land, water, and ancient symbols to make deeply personal creations.
Born in Tahlequah, Ryan RedCorn is an Osage filmmaker, photographer, WGA screenwriter, and graphic designer. Ryan graduated with an art degree in visual communications from the University of Kansas. He then co-founded the Indigenous comedy troupe, the 1491s, and started a full services ad agency in Pawhuska, Oklahoma called Buffalo Nickel Creative. He later graduated with an MFA degree in screenwriting in the Spring of 2020 and is presently alive, vaccinated and serving his second stint as a writer on the third season of FX’s tv show, Reservation Dogs.
Dan Rocky is a Tulsa–based Mvskoke/Seminole artist. Inspired by the pop art of the 80s, drag, glam, and powerful femmes, they created a world of neon illustrations. Working with acrylic paint, to digital, they often find themselves balancing the two styles creating a sweet combination of technique. Never afraid to reference, they tend to feel inspired to be bold yet simple.
Lisa Rutherford (Cherokee Nation) balances her creative time between clay arts and textile arts, including pottery, sculpture, eighteenth-century clothing, feather capes, southeast applique beadwork, and twined textiles. She has been making ancestral style pottery since 2005 and began making historic clothing to wear while she demonstrated her art, leading to her career as a living history interpreter as well as an artist. She creates historic clothing for museum exhibits, specializing in feather capes. In 2018, she was named a Cherokee National Treasure by the Cherokee Nation for her work in preserving and promoting Cherokee pottery and culture.
FB: Lisa Rutherford Art
Semurai Designs— Chris Thompson (Seminole), Jeremy Thompson(Seminole), and beading by Walela Knight (Cherokee/Choctaw). The concept for Semurai Designs was born in 2006 from two brothers’ love of art and sneakers, and the ingenuity to combine them. Jeremy Thompson and Chris Thompson began painting shoes and promoting their art medium in the local Tulsa area. What began as using cheap paint on worn down shoes, has evolved into high quality paint and expertly crafted, one-of-a-kind designs. Supplying everyone from sneakerheads that want to stand out from the crowd to celebrities that want to promote or commemorate their work.
For Kindra Swafford (Cherokee Nation), art has been a lifelong pursuit and passion. From doodling as a kid to finding early guidance from supportive teachers in Salina, OK, to honing her craft in Northeastern State University’s art program, Kindra finds regenerative joy in art. Today, her work retains the exuberance of that early passion in her vivid colors and playful compositions, particularly in watercolor, a medium to which she finds herself increasingly drawn. She is an active member of Arts Council of Tahlequah, Inkslingers of Tulsa, OVAC, and SEIAA.