Bear, 2006 (C154)
Steve Smith, Mohawk Nation, Turtle Clan.
Residing on the Six Nations Reservation near Brantford Ontario, Steve began making pottery at age 12 and fired his first pieces in the ground. While Iroquoian pottery traditions had been lost to European contact, Smith's mother Elda was one of the first to work and reclaim this knowledge, conducting research in archaeological sites and museums to study the ancient designs.
Steve Smith started Talking Earth Pottery in 1976. Today Steve, his wife Leigh, and daughter Santee create works that reflect ancient Iroquois symbols as well as bold new ideas. Their style is influenced by Mayan, Aztec, and southwest Native pottery that includes colors absent from their own Native Iroquois traditions.