Karen Ann Hoffman, Turtle Clan

Title: Dorene Rickard, Tuscarora, Beaver Clan
Image size: 29 x 39 inches

Medium: Colored and graphite pencils, acrylic, watercolor and ink

Dorene was born in 1936 and raised on the Tuscarora Nation where she continues to live. Although a self-taught beadworker, her grandmother was a very talented beadworker. As a child, Dorene lived with her grandmother and remembers going to Niagara Falls State Park with her to sell beaded souvenirs.

Dorene did not start making beadwork until after she married and her daughters became involved in competitions that included traditional Native American dress. Dorene worked with her mother and other Native women to create the beaded motifs for her children’s first outfits. As she became more experienced in her craft, people from the community began to commission beaded outfits from her.

Over the years, she has continued to study and practice raised beadwork techniques. She has taught adult beadwork classes at the Tuscarora Nation School and has taken classes with several other teachers.  “I enjoy looking at different patterns and figuring out the techniques used to make them,” says Dorene. “After many years of this, I feel happy to pass on my knowledge to new beaders.”

Dorene’s work was included in the traveling exhibition Across Borders: Beadwork in Iroquois Life, which was shown at the National Museum of the American Indian and the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto. She has also won many awards at Native American arts competitions including the annual event at the New York State Fair.