8” X 9” X 7.5”
Arches watercolor paper splints printed with archival inks, acrylic paint
This basket was created in a basic single-weave Cherokee technique featuring a reproduction of an antique postcard. The image presents a line of Plains Indians wearing beaded buckskin clothing and full feather war bonnets- not the dress style of any Eastern Woodland Tribes. The postcard script at the top reads “CHEROKEE INDIAN DANCE IN THE GREAT SMOKEY MOUNTAINS NATINAL PARK”. My feeling is that a publishing company assumed that Indian people were a generic race and consumers would not the difference if this image was peddled around the country, merely changing out the type for different markets.
My tribe has been stereotyped in this way since tourism became the number one industry in the 1940’s when the National Parkway opened. This basket addresses commercial branding of Indian people. The red splints are printed with my tribe’s traditional language copied from the Cherokee Phoenix newspaper, a contemporary publication. The interwoven brown splints are comprised of the names of products that use Indian names and images to promote their wares.