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Arts & Entertainment

Acclaimed potter Jeffrey Oestreich will demonstrate his work and give an illustrated artist’s talk Thursday, March 15, at Western Carolina University.

Oestreich will demonstrate clay-forming techniques from 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 3 p.m. in the Ward Clay Studio, Room 151 of the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center. Beginning at 4 p.m. he will deliver an illustrated artist’s talk in Room 130 of the Bardo Arts Center. A WCU Fine Art Museum Third Thursday wine and appetizer reception for Oestreich will be held at 5 p.m. in the arts center atrium, where a small exhibit of his work will be on display. All events are free and the public is invited.

Oestreich’s geometrically designed functional pottery is primarily salt or soda fired stoneware. A native of Taylors Fall, Minn., Oestreich was introduced to ceramics while in college by craft potter Warren MacKenzie. After earning his degree, he apprenticed for two years with British studio potter and teacher Bernard Leach.


On Friday, March 16 at 6:30pm, The Compleat Naturalist nature store in Asheville’s Historic Biltmore Village welcomes Don Wells, author of the newly-released book Mystery of the Trees. It is the never-before-told story about the curious, oddly-shaped “trail trees” that were used by Indians to guide themselves across the North American continent. The book covers six years of work in documenting a part of the cultural heritage of the Indians that is rapidly disappearing.

The methodology of bending the trees and their meaning are part of what has been lost. Wells said, “Probing the evidence will allow us to recover, explore and preserve this fascinating part of Indian culture.” In less than six years, bent trees have been documented as existing or previously existed in 39 states. Some of these trees clearly marked Indian trails. GPS and digital topographic technology are being used to correlate trees with known Indian trails and village sites.


Ian Moore and the Second-Hand String Band will perform in the Community Room of the Jackson County Public Library Complex in downtown Sylva on Wednesday, March 14th at 7:00 p.m.

The group will play old-time, traditional Blues and Jazz and calls their performance “almost a kind of variety show.” The band consists of Ian Moore on fiddle, Hal Herzog on guitar, and Adam Bigelow on stand-up bass.

Ian Moore has lived in Jackson County for more than a decade but came originally from New York and is a classically trained violinist.


The Cherokee Language Program at Western Carolina University is collaborating with EarlyLight Books of Waynesville to publish a bilingual and Cherokee-only version of a book titled “Animal Colors,” which is designed to teach early readers about colors and animals.

The book has already been translated into the Cherokee syllabary, is scheduled to print in February and should be available to the public in July, said Dawn Cusick, owner of EarlyLight, which specializes in science books for children and adults.


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