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Artwork Being Accepted for the 50th Annual Trail of Tears Art Show and Sale

Tuesday, May 4, 2021 - The longest-running Native American art show and competition in Oklahoma will be presented July 2-31, both virtually and in-person.

“The Trail of Tears Art Show and Sale has a longstanding reputation for excellence that artists, collectors and fans have come to expect throughout the years,” said Callie Chunestudy, cultural tourism coordinator. “While CHC remains closed to the public, we’ve worked hard to expand and enhance our virtual platform from last year, and we’re excited to also safely welcome back visitors who prefer to see the art in-person. With so much going on in the world, there’s certainly no lack of inspiration, and we’re looking forward to seeing what stories these artists will share with us this year.”

Through the juried show, artists compete for more than $15,000 in the following categories: painting, sculpture, pottery, basketry, graphics, jewelry, miniatures, diverse art forms and photography/digital art.

There is no entry fee associated with this year’s show and sale. Individuals looking to enter artwork must be a citizen of a federally recognized Native American tribe or nation and complete all submission requirements, available at no later than 5 p.m. Friday, May 14.

Winning work will be announced at 6 p.m. July 1 on the website, followed by the in-person, public opening July 2 at the Cherokee National Research Center in Cherokee Springs Plaza.

“This show is a great opportunity to introduce the public to the new space CHC will be utilizing for the safekeeping of its historic cultural collections and the operation of its genealogy services,” said Travis Owens, director of cultural tourism for the Cherokee Nation. “By offering both in-person and virtual participation, we hope to further expand our audience and increase the visibility of these talented native artists.”

The Trail of Tears Art Show began in 1972 with the intent to create a venue where diverse art forms can be used to exhibit Native American heritage. Initiated before the completion of the museum, the art show was held in the rain shelter of the Tsa-La-Gi amphitheater. In 1975, it became the first major exhibition in the museum.

For more information on the art show and sale, visit

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