Tri-County Arts Council to exhibit neo-traditional works by Iroquois artists

OLEAN, N.Y. — The Tri-County Arts Council is honored to exhibit the neo-traditional Native American pottery, sculpture and paintings of Peter and Mike Jones. Their exhibit Yadahta:wak Hihšönya:nö’ (Father & Son — They Make Things) runs from June 12 to July 24 in the Tri-County Arts Gallery, 110 W. State St., Olean.

An Artist Talk and Reception will be held from 5-9 p.m. June 12. Reservations are required for this event and are at https://rb.gy/hmyclx. Masks are required unless proof of vaccination is shown.

The work of both artists reflects their Native American heritage and issues that have impacted the Hodinöhsö:ni’ or “People of the Long House.”

Peter Jones is an internationally renowned potter and sculptor who works mostly in stoneware and white earthenware clay. He resides on the Allegany Territory of the Seneca Nation of Indians. He studied under the Hopi artist Otellie Loloma while attending the Institute of American Indian Art in New Mexico. His pottery, some of which is derived from traditional Iroquois pit firing, hand-built coiling, and slab construction, is admired, and collected by community members, Native American art collectors, and museums across the country and internationally.

His work is “neo-traditional,” which is a modern interpretation of pre-colonization Iroquois pottery.

Peter Jones is also a sculptor, creating figurative work depicting people in native Iroquois clothing, often with a humorous twist.

His work is in private and public collections world-wide, including the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, Heard Museum, Iroquois Indian Museum in Howes Cave, N.Y., Onöhsagwë:de’ Cultural Center in Salamanca, Southern Plains Indian Museum in Anadarko, Oklahoma, and Indian Arts and Crafts Board in Washington, D.C.

Mike Jones is renowned in his own right for his paintings and sculpture. His work reflects his deep respect for his Onondaga and Seneca artistic heritage, learned as a boy from his father.

“I began working in clay at a very young age under the guidance of my father Peter Jones who taught me how to hand-build Iroquois pottery,” he said. “Since the original pottery died out around the 1500s, my father and I were some of the first ones to revive this art form.”

Mike Jones’s art is in the Permanent Collections of the Heard Museum, Phoenix, Arizona; Iroquois Indian Museum, Howes Cave, N.Y.; Onöhsagwë:de’ Cultural Center, Salamanca; Southern Plains Indian Museum, Anadarko, Okla.; and Indian Arts and Crafts Board, Washington, D.C.

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