Cherokee artist Bryan Waytula's "Trickster Rabbit" at the Cherokee Cultural Pathway.


TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – New public art is on display at the Cherokee Cultural Pathway in historic downtown Tahlequah. The pathway serves as an immersive walkway connecting the Nation’s downtown museum properties and showcases artwork by Cherokee Nation artists. 

The new installations are the first of nine permanent works slated for the pathway. The first three pieces include work from Cherokee National Treasure Eddie Morrison and Cherokee Nation artists Tama Roberts and Bryan Waytula. 

Morrison’s work features four limestone sculptures of female figures whom he has known throughout his life. One statue depicts Cherokee pottery makers, while the others represent basket makers, wild onion gatherers and all the matriarchs who have played important roles in Cherokee culture since ancient times. Each sculpture stands nearly 4 feet tall, 1 foot wide and is constructed entirely from fossilized limestone fence posts.

The largest of the new installations, “Protection,” was constructed by Roberts. The nearly 11-foot tall, 500-pound sculpture was crafted almost entirely of stainless steel and represents the artist’s interpretation of the forked eye referenced in Cherokee culture, which identified beings of the upper world that allow protection and vision above and below. The insets on each forked eye offer prayers of protection.  

Known for his prismacolor drawings, charcoal works and small painted figures, Waytula brings his “Trickster Rabbit” to life in a large-scale rendition, topping out at over 6 feet tall. The sculpture is built with a reinforced skeleton, sculpted with foam, sprayed with a protective polyurea, primed and painted with colors to represent the Cherokee Nation flag.

Additional installations will be added in the new year.

As part of its rotating exhibitions, the pathway is currently hosting “Roy Boney Jr.: Notes from the Storyteller’s Sketchbook.” The exhibition runs through next spring and showcases 14 large-scale reproductions of Boney’s award-winning work, ranging from humorous takes on popular movies to studied interpretations of Cherokee history and culture. Boney’s words accompany each piece to share the inspiration and processes behind the art.

For more information on Cherokee Nation’s museum properties and exhibits, visit

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