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Traditional Cherokee Woodcarving

April 4 - 7, 2024

James Bud Smith  ·  jbudart.com

Workshop at a glance

An introduction to traditional Cherokee woodcarving techniques.


  • Concept
  • Carving technique


  • Wood


  • An understanding of Cherokee woodcarving from utilitarian carving of the past to the fine art of the present.

Artist Bio

James Bud Smith is a native of Cherokee, North Carolina and a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. He studied woodcarving at Cherokee High School under the well-known Native American sculptor, Amanda Crowe. Since 1993, he has taught contemporary and traditional Native American woodcarving techniques in grades 9-12.  He has also instructed classes at Oakland City University in Indiana, and the Museum of the Cherokee Indian in Cherokee, North Carolina. Smith attended Southwestern Community College and Western Carolina University in Sylva, North Carolina, a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities, a Master of Arts in Education, and received a Doctorate in Education at Oakland City University. He has shown and exhibited in all the major Native American Art Shows from Santa Fe Indian Market, Phoenix’s Heard Museum, Eiteljorg Museum in Indiana, Oklahoma City’s Red Earth Show and the Cherokee Art Market in Tulsa.

  • James Bud Smith
  • James Bud Smith
  • James Bud Smith
  • James Bud Smith
  • James Bud Smith

Workshop Description

During this introductory class for beginner and intermediate wood carvers, students will learn the unique characteristics of the Cherokee style of woodcarving including historical and cultural aspects. Lessons will include introductions to Cherokee wood carvers throughout history and contemporary artists and their unique contributions to the art form. Students will leave with a knowledge of the evolution of Cherokee woodcarving from the basic utilitarian needs of the past to a modern day art form.  Class objectives include Cherokee woodcarving stylistic techniques, basic safety and fundamentals of creating a wood sculpture from start to finish.  Open to all skill levels.


ART WORKSTENNESSEE ARTS COMMISIONTENNESSEE FOR THE ARTSTennessee Specialty License PlatesEAST TENNESSEE FOUNDATIONWindgate Foundation Arrowmont is being supported, in whole or in part, by federal award number SLFRP5534 awarded to the State of Tennessee by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

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