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OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc., has dedicated four more original works of art for display at the State Capitol. Senator Charles Ford, President of the organization explains the four bronze roundels were originally planned decades ago.
"This was something that Solomon Layton, the architect who designed our state capitol had envisioned; four bronze roundels depicting the state's native people placed on each side of the main entrances to the House and Senate Chambers," explained Senator Ford.
Senator Ford said he immediately thought of fellow Senator and Native American Artist Kelly Haney to sculpt the roundels. Senator Haney, a Master-Artist of the Five Civilized Tribes and full blood Seminole said he was honored to be asked to sculpt the roundels.
"I believe a person's talents are a gift from God. I feel very blessed to have the ability to sculpt and paint, and I'm honored to be able to share those gifts with the people of Oklahoma," said Haney, who declined the artist's commission for the works.
Funding for the sculptures was provided by the Tulsa Tribune Foundation, a public foundation serving Oklahoma in the areas of education, history and the arts.
"These roundels depict Native American images and symbols, but I believe the strengths and values they represent are shared by all Oklahomans," explained Senator Haney.
The eastern tribes of Oklahoma will be represented in two roundels on each side of the entrance to the Senate Chambers, entitled "the Power of Hope" and "With the Vision of an Eagle." The tribes of western Oklahoma will be represented in the two bronzes on either side of the House chamber entrance entitled "The Will to Live" and "The Spirit of Heritage."