Winners Announced for 23rd Annual Cherokee Homecoming Art Show

Martha Berry’s “The Orange Monster’s Masquerade Ball.”

Published August 14, 2018

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The Cherokee National Historical Society announced the winners of the 23rd Annual Cherokee Homecoming Art Show at an awards reception Friday night.

Cherokee National Treasure Martha Berry was awarded the grand prize for her beaded bandolier bag titled “The Orange Monster’s Masquerade Ball.”

Berry has been recognized at the show many times throughout the years and this is her third time being honored with the Grand Prize.

“I am beyond humbled to receive this honor,” said Cherokee National Treasure Martha Berry. “While this piece was a little out of my comfort zone at first, it enabled me to address my concerns about the current political climate and its impact on Native people and the country as a whole. It also demonstrates the importance of utilizing ancient iconography in contemporary work to ensure that Native art remains timely, relevant and impactful.”

The premier Cherokee art show runs through Sept. 22 and features 92 pieces by 60 artists, divided into two divisions: traditional and contemporary.

The traditional division is defined as “arts originating before European contact” and consists of three categories: basketry, pottery and traditional arts.

The contemporary division is defined as “arts arising among the Cherokee after European contact” and consists of seven categories: paintings, sculpture, pottery, basketry, beadwork, jewelry and textiles.

“This show has become a staple to the Cherokee National Holiday and a wonderful way for us to showcase the incredible talent of Cherokee artists,” said Dr. Charles Gourd, executive director of the Cherokee Heritage Center. “There are so many wonderful things going on during our homecoming celebration but this is one event you truly can’t miss. These artists are what keeps our culture thriving and it is through their work that we continue to share our history, culture and traditions with the world.”

Artists competed for a share of more than $10,000 in prize money, sponsored by Cherokee Nation Businesses.

First-place winners in each category are as follows:

Traditional Arts: Phyllis Jimmeye, “Natural Grass Bag”
Traditional Basketry: Mike Dart, “Giggin’ Basket”
Contemporary Pottery: Troy Jackson, “Bird Effigy Pot”
Contemporary Basketry: Renee Hoover, “Newborn Love”
Visual Arts: Ron Mitchell, “Confrontation With The People”
Sculpture: Dan Corley, “The Greatest Identity Theft”
Beadwork: Carolyn Pallett, “Our Light Shines All Directions”
Textiles: Karen Berry, “Water is Life”
Jewelry: Toneh Chuleewah, “Tludatsi, Underground Panther”

Other special awards include the following:

Emerging Artist Award: Brandy Brown, “Clans”
Betty Scraper Garner Cherokee Elder Artist Award: Tonia Hogner-Weavel, “Dearskin Suit”

For a complete list of winners and photos from the reception, please visit

The Cherokee Heritage Center is the premier cultural center for Cherokee history, culture and the arts. It is located at 21192 S. Keeler Drive, Park Hill. Summer hours are Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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