Cherokee artwork and artifacts will be displayed in the newly renovated hotel tower at the Cherokee Nation’s Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa in Oklahoma. Guest rooms will feature three-dimensional art such as textiles, baskets, painted feathers, arrows, moccasins, blowguns, soapstone pipes, stickball items and walking sticks as well as art prints. Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker said, “The Cherokee culture is widely recognized for its historic and modern-day contributions to the landscape of American Indian art. For the Cherokee Nation, supporting and preserving those contributions is a matter of law and a principle I have endorsed for years. By making investments in our Cherokee artisans, we are preserving our culture and heritage while increasing our ability to share it with the world.”
Cherokee Nation law requires that 1 percent of the cost of any renovation or new construction project that exceeds $500,000 be set aside to procure any form of art considered to be historic, cultural or traditional, including crafts, paintings, beadwork, sculptures and landscaping. The law also allows for the expense of preserving, displaying and installing the artworks. In 2014, Baker said, the tribe and its businesses have spent nearly $300,000 on Cherokee art, artifacts and display items. He added that amount will grow as more construction projects are completed.
Shawn Slaton, chief executive officer of Cherokee Nation Businesses, said, “Our investments in remaining the regional entertainment leader, as well as our investments into the infrastructure for tribal health facilities, show our commitment to improving access to jobs and services for Cherokee people. Earmarking specific funds from these investments shows our commitment to preserving Cherokee culture and art for future generations.”
Cherokee art and artifacts can be seen at most of the tribe’s properties, including each of the eight Cherokee Casinos, plus government and business offices and health centers.