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Past Featured Artists

The following artists have been featured artists at realwildrice.com.


017.jpgDerald Keezer 

Featured February 2014 ~ Hand Carved Walking Sticks

Derald Wayne Keezer, White Earth enrollee, son of Robert Alan Keezer and Sophie Angeline Waukazo was born in Cass Lake, MN in 1946. Raised by his mother and step-father Raymond Monroe, Derald grew up in Cass Lake until age 5 when his family moved to Minneapolis, MN. In the early 70’s he returned to Cass Lake, MN and alternately lived on the Leech Lake and White Earth Reservations before settling in his home near South Twin Lake, Naytahwaush, MN in 2011. His White Earth Reservation home site is the homestead of his father’s family in the early 1900’s.

Derald first started wood carving at age 20 when he taught himself how to make wood decoys for ice fishing. About 10 years later he started making canes from diamond willow. Now Derald enjoys creating his canes with a variety of wood he gathers in the forests surrounding his home. It can take 30 to 50 hours to complete one of his canes depending on the complexity of the wood he uses. The cane handles are made from pine tree knots. Each cane and knot is carefully stripped of bark, fine sanded and polished, creating his beautiful and unique works of art. 

faron.jpgFaron Blakely

Featured March 2014 ~ Paintings and Burnt Wood

As a young boy born in Park Rapids, Minnesota, Faron became accustomed to small town living. He enjoyed walks in the woods and playing with his friends. He was always aware of his surroundings and took to nature well. This is where his first ideas for his drawings became to be. His Indian name, Keewaydin, which means north wind in Ojibway, was given to him by his uncle. This name helped him identify and inspire who he is. Throughout his life he moved to different places, and then found himself in south Minneapolis living with family and friends. This is where he spent his adolescent years and most of his young adult life. He struggled through hardships and battled addiction and taught himself how to survive the rough life on the streets. Through his times of struggles Faron only became stronger. He finished high school and started a family.After realizing that Minneapolis wasn’t a place he wanted for his children, Faron and two daughters moved to Fargo, ND, bringing nothing but their clothes. Faron had to build a new life for them. He knew his art was the only way to get them started. Living in Fargo since 2000, Faron has become well known in the Fargo-Moorhead community. Not only is he referred to as an artist, but he’s also a drummer, a singer and a traditional dancer.Now walking the red road of recovery as a husband and father, Faron and his wife Lauretta are blessed to be raising their five children and building his art business. He continues to travel to powwows and art fairs getting the needed exposure. Faron is a very gifted artist. He can turn a simple image into a magnificent masterpiece. His art has traveled throughout the U.S, Canada, and the world. He is truly a person who was born to bring you Native American art at its finest.



janeto.jpgJanet Oshkinowe

Featured April 2014 ~ Various Beadwork


Janet Oshkinowe Ind izh I ne kaaz (is my name). Shing go nak quay Ojibwe ezhi ni kaaz o yaan (is my Ojibwe name).  Gaa waa baa bi gan I kaag  Ish ko ni gan ing  ind oo ji baa (White Earth is the reservation I am from.  Makwa In doo dam (Bear is my clan).

I am an enrolled member of the White Earth Nation. I was born and lived in Minneapolis, MN most of my life.  I have four great children and 5+1 on the way beautiful grandchildren. I returned to White Earth in 2001. Although I only visited White Earth as a child, in my heart it has always been my home. My grandparents who both lived here were fluent speakers of the Ojibwe language, unfortunately I am not, but I am learning. 

The first time I was introduced to beading was in the 7th grade. Back in the day, we had a program called Indian Upward Bound. Many of you may remember this program. The program supported Urban Native Youth in the public school system. After making my first beaded piece, I was hooked on the art. 

Although I went through many trials and tribulations through my life (as many people do), beading always seemed to bring me back to earth.  Beading helped me to relax and creating it taught me patience. My work is more contemporary, but I have made some regalia pieces.  

In the past few years I have creativity was a passion and I started creating my own designs, and list them as “originals.”  Most of my pieces are loom or weave beading (as it is by called by many), but I have also used other styles of beading such as peyote, brick stitch and appliqué (medallions).

I was taught so much by the art of beading that I put together the “Learn to Bead Project” in 2005. I wanted to teach our youth the art, as well as patience and the gift of giving to others. I was fortunate to teach over 40 youth in the 5 villages of White Earth the different styles of loom and peyote stitch beadwork, as well as dream catchers & tobacco pouches. I loved it and hope to do it again soon

I have given many pieces away to family, friends, community elders and fund-raisers because I believe it was a gift from the creator.  “When given a gift, the right thing to do is give it to others.”


Robert Johnson

Featured May 2014 ~ Hand Carved Fishing Lures

I was born in Mahnomen, Minnesota on September 7th of 1961, the seventh child of Everette “Bud”, and Betty Johnson.  We grew up west of Nay-tah-waush, where the prairie meets the big woods.  I graduated from Waubun High School in 1979.  I received my bachelor’s degree in Valley City, North Dakota and my master’s from SW State, in Marshall, Minnesota. 

I have many fond memories of growing up on the White Earth Indian Reservation. At an early age my father instilled in me a love for the outdoors, and a deep respect for my native heritage. 

I knew at an early age I wanted to teach art. In 1985 that dream became a reality after I received my first teaching degree. I taught in northwestern Minnesota for 14 years. In 1999 my family and I relocated to the city of Baxter, right in the heart of the Minnesota lakes country. I am a full-time art teacher. I teach pottery, photography, and decoy design in the nearby town of Brainerd. I am also a professional spear fishing guide. 

My artistic background and a love of spearing led me to the hobby of fish decoy carving. This hobby eventually evolved into a part time business of making and selling decoys. In 2000 I started to compete in decoy competitions, and have earned over 400 awards, along with several “World” and “National” titles. I received my greatest honor in 2007, when the National Fish Decoy Association bestowed upon me the title of “Living Legend” for the work I do with students.

I am married to a wonderful woman named Christle, and we have two sons Andrew and Dylan. 



Gloria Goodwin

Featured June 2014 ~ Star Quilts

I was born in White Earth and grew up in the village of Naytahwaush. I went to elementary school in Naytahwaush graduating from Mahnomen high school. My parents were Catherine and Leonard McDougall. I am one of ten siblings. One of my brothers is “Sonny” McDougall who teaches the Ojibwe language.

I have a very busy life taking care of my three grandchildren while the parents work and I’m very active with the children’s ministry at the church. I have two daughters, one is a 3rd grade teacher in Bagley and the other works in Rice Lake with the CHRs as a transport aide. I have four grandchildren and lost a son in a car/train accident. 

My husband Butch and I are retired. I was a nurse for many years at the Clearwater Hospital in Bagley.

My love for making star quilts started in the late 1980’s and 1990’s watching my mother sew. I also had two years of sewing in high school. Since then I have made over 50 star quilts and many other block quilts. I sewed the stars diamond to diamond at first. Ann Wade from Roy Lake showed me how to sew the strip stars which is what I do now. I have given most of my quilts away to sisters, nieces and other relatives, some for memorials and I have sold some.

In the past year I have put together about seven quilts and have also had classes, teaching three nieces in my home. They made the most beautiful quilts in striking colors and “We all did a lot of ripping.” I will be teaching them again this spring and then they will be able to make their own.

My biggest regret is that I hadn’t become interested while my mother was quilting, so that I could have shared this with her. I enjoy sewing and on quiet days you will find me putting my quilts together.


pic-for-wildrice-site.jpgAnita Zurn

Featured July 2014 ~ Paintings

I was born in 1958, shortly after my grandma, Nancy Fairbanks, moved her family of six from Pine Point to Detroit Lakes. My dad is from Callaway. I have many relatives living on the White Earth reservation or nearby. I have always been very proud of my heritage. My grandma was very important to me and taught me so much about life. I loved her and my mother’s stories of their younger days in Pine Point and Ponsford. I know there’s not much there these days but to me it is a wonderful place to be.

I call it “P-town” and I enjoy so many things about the area.  Besides my family and friends are the birds, animals, water, deer, beaver, turtles, herons, ducks and all other wildlife there. It’s such a quiet and beautiful area. All these things and more inspire me to paint. Most of my paintings are of animals and birds. I believe they are a special gift from the Creator. The message I try to convey with my art is “look at these animals and see how amazingly beautiful they are!” I often paint animals that are “smiling” or mothers and their babies. My art has been called “whimsical”.

I use mostly watercolors in my paintings but have tried acrylics too. I went to college where I concentrated on Graphic Design. I was able to work as a Graphic Designer for close to 30 years. In 2003 I started painting and other than a few demonstrations, I’m pretty much self-taught. It’s fun to see the improvements in my paintings over the years. I call art my “therapy” and would be totally lost without it. I feel very blessed to have this ability and even more when my art makes someone else smile or happy.

I live in Blaine, MN and participate in many art shows around the city. I’ve been honored to win awards at art shows. I donate several paintings a year for fund raising.  I’ve also sold paintings online and my art is in countries all over the world! 



Sandra Hernandez

Featured August/September 2014 ~ Various Birch Bark Products

I am an enrolled member of the White Earth Nation. I grew up in Cass Lake. We started doing birch bark with my mom as a young child. She did the sweet grass baskets and I learned the trade from her.

I have eight children and raised them in the Twin Cities area. I moved home fifteen years ago. Kathy and Earl Hoagland helped get me back into the trade when I moved home. When I have bigger orders, my family is quick to help me collect and gather the necessary materials used. Everyone makes their birch bark differently but there are not too many people left that do.

I am also a cook for the various traditional camps held on the reservations. They focus on the traditions of our culture and I have been doing this for the last ten years. My enchilada’s are well known at these camps.



photo.pngAnnette Sieling

Featured October 2014 ~ Paintings

My name is Annette (Ross) Sieling , I am an enrolled member of the White Earth Tribe.  My dad is Father George Ross of Cass Lake. I grew up in Minneapolis and graduated from Concordia in St. Paul. I have taught visual art for 30+ years in Eagle Bend, MN.  My husband John is a High School football coach and also retired from teaching. We have two children: Christopher and Kerry, both whom live in Minnesota. We also have 4 grandchildren: Isabella, Jayden, Michael, and Elizabeth.

I love working in different medias, especially in drawing (color pencil, pastels, charcoal etc..) and enjoy watercolor painting.  Recently I have been asked to do portraits and have been happy to work in that area, so I do special requests. My artwork is featured on “Etsy” and my page is called “InspiredbyZab.” Please check it out, if you would like to contact me, my email address is sielinja@midwestinfo.net, through Etsy, or give me a call at 218-639-9329. 


bbb30f96.jpgTonya Azure

Featured November/December 2014 ~ Beadwork

Boozhoo! My name is Tonya Azure, I was born in Detroit Lakes to my parents, Rebecca (Azure) Villebrun and Robert Smith. I was raised by my grandmother, Maricanna “Kibby” Sullivan and live on the White Earth Reservation most of my life, but I also grew up in Bemidji and Minneapolis. I have a teenage daughter, 4 siblings, 5 nieces and 1 nephews that I cherish. I haveattended school in Bagley, Bemidji and Waubun, I graduated from Circle of Life in May 1994.  I am currently majoring in Accounting at Minnesota State Community & Technical College. I have been working on and off. I started my passion for beading while attending a class at Bemidji High School. The teacher who inspired me was Mr. Goodwin. I startedwith key chains and barrettes and beaded for a while. I continued to bead, but I stopped for a period of time. Recently, I finally started beading again, still learning and teaching myself how to bead. I am currently working on 2 of the medallions. It makes my day when I am being told that I do an amazing job.  I’m beading because it’s part of our culture.  In my free time, I enjoy beading, reading, spending time with my family, especially, my grandniecey-poo, going to movies, and shopping.

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