I am a member of the turtle clan, of the Cayuga Nation, from the Six Nations of Grand River Reserve, in Ontario. Although I grew up off the reserve, I still frequently visited relatives and attended ceremonies when ever possible. In doing so I found following my traditions brings me that much closer to realizing that things have a purpose in this world. My current place of residence is on the Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve located on Manitoulin Island.
I am a Native Artist, craftsman, jeweler, and photographer. I paint native art on canvas, watercolor paper, leather, deer and moose antler, abalone shell, and birch bark. In addition I do stone and antler carving, and have made rings out of antler. Most recently I have begun to design contemporary clothing out of Deer and Moose hide (buckskin).
What I try to do is touch people with my art. I try to show others who don’t know the spiritual connection between native people and the natural world, and how we as people are affected by our surroundings. I hope that each individual see’s a different meaning, after all we all have different views and opinions, and I respect that in the viewer. The more people who see my work, and the more they realize we are one with the environment, the better I feel about my work.
I have been interested in art since I was very young, and I was fortunate to have some excellent teachers growing up through public and secondary school. Upon graduating secondary school I enrolled in the Visual Arts Program at Cambrian College in Sudbury, Ontario. Although there was no Native Art program at Cambrian, I gained valuable insight from the program, and from the knowledgeable instructors I was honored with having. I learned a lot from them in the field of design, color theory, composition, and many other aspects in the field of art. Most of my wisdom in Native Art, such as the symbols, colors, shapes, and styles that differentiate this from other art forms have come from my own perceptions of this world. These things cannot be taught by someone, each artist has their own style, and perceptions. In growing up off the reserve and away from my culture this is my way of learning more about my traditional ways, and I try to follow them when and where ever possible.
Foto powwow in 2003
Foto powwow in 2018