About the Exhibition
Native American Christians are often accused of being assimilated or “colonized.” Yet it’s not that simple—especially for the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee, and Seminole people of the Southeastern United States who used to be labeled “civilized.”
The installations in Altars of Reconciliation express diverse, individual faith experiences of three Southeastern Native artists who practice Christianity. Each “altar” depicts ongoing personal reconciliation between the artist and God, with awareness of the complex history of Christianity among Southeastern tribes and the mystery of faith that transcends it.
—Contributing scholar Stacy Fife Pratt, PhD, Muscogee (Creek)
Meet the artists
Bobby C. Martin is an artist, educator, and facilitator who works out of his 7 Springs Studio near West Siloam Springs, Oklahoma. Martin’s artwork is exhibited and collected internationally. He has been featured in numerous group and solo exhibitions, the most recent being a one-person exhibition entitled But You Don’t Look Indian… at ArtVentures Gallery in Fayetteville, Arkansas in 2018. As an independent curator, his most recent project was a national touring exhibition, Return from Exile: Contemporary Southeastern Indian Art, which was on display at various venues throughout the United States from 2015-2018.
Martin’s work is in numerous museum collections, including the Philbrook Museum and Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and the Museum of the Great Plains in Lincoln, Nebraska.
An enrolled citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) tribe, he currently holds a Professor of Visual Art position at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.
Erin Shaw is a painter of borderlands, the spaces between worlds. Her art faces the dualities we all carry inside of us, synthesizing them into understanding through narrative. As a visual storyteller, the child of an Oklahoma farm, Shaw tills the rich soil of dichotomy.
As an American Indian (Chickasaw-Choctaw) artist, Shaw creates in a state of tension, suspended between two worlds. Humor pervades her art and reveals truths in unanticipated ways. The trickster, a disruptive force who turns us about until we see something new, appears throughout her work.
Shaw earned her BFA in studio art from Baylor University and her MFA from the University of Oklahoma. Erin currently serves as Assistant Professor of Visual Arts at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, AR while also exhibiting her work throughout the United States. She currently lives and works in Northwest Arkansas with her husband, son, and a shoe thieving bird dog.
Tony Tiger is an artist, art educator, and independent art curator. He earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Oklahoma and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Oklahoma State University. Tiger has exhibited nationally and internationally. He was a co-curator of Return from Exile: Contemporary Southeastern Indian Art, which had a successful ten-venue run.
Tiger is an enrolled member of the Sac and Fox Tribe, with Seminole and Muscogee Creek lineage. Tiger is married with children and grandchildren he lives near Oklahoma City. He is represented by the Exhibit C Gallery in Oklahoma City and the Rainmaker Gallery Bristol UK. He enjoys hiking, fishing, and hunting with fond memories of his ancestors doing the same.
Image: Tony Tiger, Mvskoke Narrative (2018). Monoprint, etching, serigraph, stencils with pen and ink, 22 x 30 in.