Kristin Gentry is passionate about using her art to create different ways to preserve her traditional Southeastern tribal culture of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She uses her art to educate and restore the beauty of her people’s journey to where they are as Chahta Okla, Choctaw People, today. Through her art she continues to find more of her Indian Identity as a Chahta Ohoyo, Choctaw Woman, and Ishki, Mother. She understands that the need for her cultural art is necessary to the future of her daughter and her people. She works to involve her community through education and being the voice for Native American artists and Native American women in today’s society. She is a writer, curator, painter, printmaker, and photographer. She often photographs families in their tribal regalia and creates designs and patterns from traditional clothing in her painting and prints.

I stylistically form nature in a  way that is in contrast of how many artists rely on realistic representations. Formally, I am very interested in making compositions out of the colors, the positive or negative shapes of the plants and other nature. I am interested in symmetry as it’s always present throughout my tribal culture. I emphasize nature’s influence by showing the floral patterns from traditional clothing. Through this stylistic approach, my work honors my culture that is found in nature based customs and traditions. I look at our designs and research how they have transformed or remained unchanged to today. I also research the influence of tribal agrarian history of gardened produce and pollination for crops’ influence on Native American art and clothing. Through my art I explore how the symbolic meanings of the designs influence our cultural traditions today and influence our larger communities.

-Kristin Gentry