Betty Gaedtke of the Quapaw Nation talked about her revival of traditional Mississippian pottery at our August 8th Preservation Conversation. If you missed it, you can see it on Youtube! Below is Betty's artist statement about her work:
"My interest in making pottery began decades ago, but since I had a full time job with the US Postal Service, it was nearly impossible for me to dedicate the time for it. When I retired early, my husband and I bought property near Yellville, Arkansas. In 2010 we built a house there and moved to our getaway in the Ozark Mountains. I was very fortunate that in our local area there are numerous potters, many whom studied and taught all over the country and the world. I soon became friends with many of them and began personal one on one lessons and monthly group workshops with experienced potters. I was mentored by Helen Phillips, a world renowned potter and teacher, Robin MacGrogan, a lifelong potter and professor in pottery and the arts, Sue Whittington, an experienced potter, and Marian Yancey, an experienced potter. As I became more comfortable making my own pottery, in 2012 I decided to dive into where my real passion was, pottery made by my Quapaw tribal ancestors. I took personal one on one lessons with Lisa Crews, experienced in Mississippian pottery, who taught me how to make head pots and animal & human effigy pots in Quapaw and Mississippian styles. I have since made about 300 Quapaw and Mississippian pots making them in the styles and decorations unearthed in Quapaw villages. My inspiration comes from my many visits to museums that display Quapaw pottery and twice viewing hundreds of Quapaw pots stored at the University of Arkansas. I have read many books that are dedicated to some of the best Quapaw and Mississippian pottery ever found. I have pots displayed at several museums around the country."
The video of her talk can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au0vIp0bnQU&t=75s