Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Posts tagged ‘delf norona museum’

Wild Heart Brings Spirit Alive

 

 

Mindi at Opening

Mindi Yarbrough, artist Wild Heart, recently had her Opening Night at the Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex in Moundsville, WV.

Artists work in many different ways. Some paint exactly what they see, while others add a little imagination to their pictures. Mindi Yarbrough has an added element in her paintings. She captures the spirit of the person or animal. Mindi portrays herself as “a self taught and self described outsider artist.”

Mindi started drawing at the age of five. Her love of nature shines forth in everything she does. As a little girl, she enjoyed playing in the creek, where she would enjoy nature and catch snakes (and just about any other animal, insect or amphibian she could get her hands on).

“All kinds of snakes,” she explains, “but I was never afraid of them, despite being bitten many times, and often kept them as pets.” Snakes are Mindi’s power animal. She even has tattoos of them on her arms. Snakes have been associated with shamans. In fact in some cultures, snake bites are an initiation and pre-requisite into shamanism.

Mindi's The Crow Holds the KeyThe crow holds a special attraction to her as she feels it has a magical quality. It holds the magical key to the womb of fundamental energy where all possibilities exist. Crows live all around the world, reminding us that magic can be found everywhere. They often are associated with healing and the universal law.
Mindi's OwlOwl is Mindi’s dream-time guide helping to navigate the unconscious world.  The Owl serves as the keeper of ancient wisdom and can see the secrets and agendas of others. The Owl is a prophet who can see, hear, and feel events before they transpire. 
Mindi Dream CatchersHer dream catchers are up-cycled art with the center web being a doily, with a hand macrame hoop and fringe made with cotton twine and yarn. Dream catchers have been part of Native American culture for generations. They are usually hung by the bed at night to catch bad dreams before they disturb your sleep. There is a hole in the center to let the good dreams slip through.Mindi FeathersFeathers are important in the Native American tradition also, as they are seen as gifts from the sky, the sea and the trees. Often a feather has a message as it lands on or near someone. It reminds them of a spiritual connection that we all have to our creator and with passed loved ones. The gift of the feather is represented by passion – passion for your gift from the Creator – Mindi’s passion being artistic vision.Mindi's Bear Woman

This painting of Bear Woman makes me smile. It tells a great Blackfoot Legend of the older sister and her bear. Mindi has even added the end of that legend as she shows the star constellation of Ursa Major in the background. All of her work shows depth and meaning.

Mindi Christmas treeUpon leaving the art show, a beautifully decorated Christmas tree glowed in the hallway. The Mound Museum Christmas tree is decorated with plants that were important to those prehistoric Native Americans living in the area. The people who built Grave Creek Mound probably grew small gardens, which included squash, sunflowers, pumpkins, gourds, and goosefoot – the decorations on this tree.

It’s no surprise that Mindi works in the field of art on a daily basis. At present she is Art Director and Senior Graphic Designer at Beyond Marketing in Wheeling, WV. Her expertise lies in designing just what the customer desires.

Mindi has been drawing and painting since childhood. She smiles as she tells others, “I have never wanted to be anything other than an artist, except maybe a mermaid.” Mindi would definitely be a very special mermaid!

 

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Grave Creek Mound Archeological Complex

Grave Creek Archeological Center in Moundsville, WV

Grave Creek Archeological Center in Moundsville, WV

It’s not what you find
It’s what you find out.
~David Hurst Thomas

That sign was the first thing that caught my eye as I entered the Grave Creek Mound Archeological Complex in Moundsville, West Virginia.  Those words put the mind in a state of exploration – the goal of this facility. While the focal point of this entire complex is the large earthen Grave Creek Mound beside the parking lot, today the visit will be inside the complex.

Curators at work in the research facility

Curators at work in the research facility

Close to the entrance into the building is a large glass wall so visitors can view recent finds being researched and recorded by curators in West Virginia Archeological Research Facility, which is a recently added wing in 2008. This is where artifacts, from various archeological digs all over the state, are processed, studied and recorded.

One portion of the complex, Delf Norona Museum, displays information regarding the lives of prehistoric people and the structure of The Mound inself.  This complex is indeed complex, as it holds not only information regarding the Grave Creek Mound, but also touches on rotating displays of many local cultural and historic exhibits entitled: West Virginia’s Gift to The World.  They have given themselves space to grow as exhibits are not in the least bit crowded, making viewing a pleasure.  Throughout the year, lectures and films in their 135 seat theater are held to inform the public on Native Americans and Ancient Americans.

Ron Hinkle's display of blownglass creations

Ron Hinkle’s display of blownglass creations

Ron Hinkle’s Blown Glass immediately caught my eye since my father was also a glassblower. Ron’s wall-size blown glass display sparkles with a bit of magic as every piece is unique. Since opening his own company in 1994, Ron hopes to keep the spirit and art of glassblowing alive and well in the area.

Fashion Dolls of Pete Ballard

Fashion Dolls by Pete Ballard

Ladies Fashion Dolls of the Nineteenth Century by Pete Ballard catches the eye of most ladies as they enter the front door.  This collection shows the changes in ladies’ fashions from 1770 to 1930 in a large display where each of the fifty-six dolls has a brass plate with its name, year, and number for easy cross reference to a booklet which can be picked up just inside the room. The oldest doll, Elizabeth, was from the style of 1800, being dressed in a green and red wool pattern.

Marble King's creative design with marbles

Marble King’s creative design with marbles

The Marble King actually received its name from a gentleman named Berry Pink. While working for Peltier Glass, Berry traveled across the country hosting marble tournaments and giving away marbles at each stop. Reminds me of Johnny Appleseed ! When Peltier Glass could no longer keep up with the demand, Berry and a partner formed a company and named it after Berry’s nickname, The Marble King. Not only do children still enjoy playing marbles either in the traditional way or with games, but many artistic designs have also been created using their beautiful colors. Marbles are thought to be the first competitive sport as far back as the Greek and Roman Empires.

Display of Homer Laughlin China Company's popular items

Display of Homer Laughlin China Company’s popular items

Homer Laughlin China Company has provided many families with quality chinaware for nearly 150 years. Homer and Shakespeare Laughlin started their company way back in 1871 in East Liverpool, Ohio. In 1902, Homer moved the kilns to Newell, WV just across the Ohio River using the new suspension bridge and trolleyline as a means to bring his trained potters across to West Virginia. Here they constructed the largest pottery plant ever built in the world. This fine pottery is a highly collectible item in the area, but many families still use it for special occassions. This large display will bring back memories for many of the viewers.

The remainder of this museum deals with the history of the basic reason for this entire complex – Grave Creek Mound – just outside the building. This large mound measuring 62′ high with a 240′ base diameter, is the largest conical earthen mound in the New World.  The secrets of this mound will require another tale. So stay tuned…for the rest of the story.

Grave Creek Mound Archeological Complex in Moundsville, West Virginia is located on the east bank of the Ohio River. Traveling on the West Virginia side of the river, follow Route 2 into Moundsville.  Turn left on 8th Street and after two blocks turn right onto Jefferson Ave. You can’t miss The Mound! Admission is free and the complex is open Tuesday – Saturday from 9am – 5pm.

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