Earth Day Artist Spotlight: Speakthunder Berry
Our annual Earth Day Fair and Parade is just around the corner, and we are especially thrilled to kick off the parade to the gift of drumming and singing by our parade leader this year. Speakthunder Berry will be joining us from Warm Springs to lead the parade, and then take to the stage around 2:00pm to share more songs and stories about the significance of each song. We couldn’t imagine a better fit for this celebration of the planet and our community.
Speakthunder was born in Central Oregon on a small reservation (Warm Springs-fathers tribe), moved to Tacoma Wa. (Puyallup Nation-Mothers tribe) at an early age and began to attend an all native school where in 2nd grade (Chief Leschi Schools) his talents were discovered by his teachers. He then was referred to gifted and talented classes where his abilities flourished and grew over the next several years.
Now residing with a teepee gallery on the Warm Springs Reservation, Mr. Speakthunder has made a living selling his artwork, including carvings and hand drums, for the past two years, has sat on the art committee board for installation of new coastal art and designs in the New Emerald Queen casino where his art is featured. Mr. Berry has spent the last year (pre-covid) teaching introductory coastal art classes to youth, and educating the public on past and current cultural beliefs, way of life, and issues. He has an active Facebook (Speakthunder Galleries) that does live videos drawing and talking about native life and culture. He also has a current website (speakthunderart.com).
Speakthunder is a full time single father of two little girls (10 & 12) and is an active member in his community (7 drums, pow wows, coastal jams, funerals and ceremonies). Mr. Berry knows many common Coastal songs, 7 Drums songs, Shaker, and NAC songs, and is requested to sing at events, funerals and sweat lodge. Currently Mr. Berry is an active drum maker, logo designer, graphics designer, pen & ink artist, woodworker, painter, and is considered to be a master Salish artist (20+ years coastal designing).
Check out Speakthunder’s work online, or view a sample in the video below. We’ll see you at Earth Day on Saturday, April 22nd from 11:30-3:00pm in downtown Bend!