March 16, 2012

Boney's art fosters Cherokee culture

Boney’s art combines cultures

By Renee FiteThe Japanese have animé, and the Cherokees have Boney.

Artist and language preservationist Roy Boney doesn’t remember a time when he didn’t draw. His cartoons, comic book characters and art are used to preserve and educate others about Cherokee history and language, even on an iPhone and iPad. One of his paintings hanging at the Cherokee Art Center depicts Sequoyah using an iPad with the Cherokee syllabary on it.

As a specialist with the Cherokee Language Technology program in the Education Services Department at the Cherokee Nation, Boney has an opportunity to combine several of his talents and interests–art, culture and history–like working with Apple to get the syllabary on the iPhone and iPad.

“You can text in Cherokee; every iPhone and iPad in the world has it now,” Boney said.

Boney seeks to broaden people’s perception of Cherokee art through his forms of artistic expression.

“It’s a goal to dispel the stereotypical ideas people have about Cherokees and Native Americans in general,” he said.
Some of his projects:In 1999 and 2000, he started doing online comics and developed a following. Canadian writer Matthew Shepherd approached him about collaborating on a project about zombies, “Dead Eyes Open,” which became a six-issue series, and then a trade paperback.

He illustrated one story, “Horn-toed Lady and Coyote,” in a collaboration for an anthology of Native American Trickster stories.
And:While he working for the American Indian Resource Center on projects with Joseph Erb, they went to schools with a high population of Cherokee students and made animation films with Cherokee and Creek language, using claymation. The students would help make clay figures, write the story boards, move the clay figures, and film the action. The schools and families were invited to see the completed films.Comment:  For more on Boney, see Cherokees Mourn Steve Jobs and Rising Stars in Native Animation.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

No acute in anime. (Sorry, that just bugs a *lot* of anime fans. It's up there with talking about how Zelda and his boyfriend Sheik beat Gannon.)

Anyway, the funny thing is how much computers have helped restore indigenous languages. I credit Unicode; with six bytes, you should have no trouble coding every language ever, possibly even every individual's handwriting.