Mark Barfoot, Drum Maker, with members of
Pipestone Drum and Rudy Youngblood, dancer and star of Apocalypto, feature film. Photo was taken during the music and dance production Spirit the 7th Fire.
Mark Barfoot, was born in 1952 in North America. He learned the art of finger weaving at a very young age. Much of what he learned was self taught, but he studied with elders from various nations to learn other mediums of Indian folk art.
Mark's work has been sold in the Smithsonian Museum for the American Indian's Gift Shops and in many private collections across the country including those of Bill Miller , Buffy Saint Marie, Rita Coolidge, Keith Secola, and Larry Mullen of U2. Among others who own and play his drums are Patrick Mirabal, Moontee
Sinquah, Rita Coolidge, Rudy Youngblood, people from the drum group Pipestone, (many other drum people) Shea Keck, Mickey Free, Irene Bedard, Matt Kramer, former lead singer from Saigon Kick, Eli Secody, the late Floyd Red Crow Westerman, Dennis Banks, and countless others.
Mark makes personal appearances at shows, schools, colleges, and conferences in the interest of education and sharing the Native American style of life with others. He performs with the flute, and gives talks about the Drum and its importance in American Culture. He also conducts hand drum workshops, and while teaching the process of building a Native American Indian hand drum, he shares his deep knowledge of Native history and lifeways.
In 1990, Mark began to offer his Native Style Folk Art to the public. Since that time, he has received Awards of Excellence and special recognition from fine art and craft shows and powwows. He travels over North America and meets many new and old friends each year at shows and powwows. Mark's fine craft arts (flutes, antler sculptures, and hand made jewelry) are well known and loved by people all over the country.
Through using native style traditions, he has become well known as a drum and flute maker.
Mark elk hide drums, are a deep and basic part of Native life. Mark's drums are made GREEN, like many other drum people. NO tree is cut for the purpose of making a drum. What is already taken will always be honored. This is the Native way. Mark does not personally know of any drum makers in North America who cut trees solely for the purpose of making drums.
Mark designed and made stage drums, hand drums, and a powwow drum for 'Spirit the Seventh Fire' (watch the video) a Peter Buffett music and dance production that traveled the country from Omaha to D.C. to Philadelphia and touched many people's lives with a beautiful story about a Native American man, who had moved away from his Indian heritage, and how he rediscovered his spirituality through dance and the drum. Mark makes all size powwow drums, hand drums, sweat lodge and table drums. He now has added a line of painted hand drums to his drum making collection. Innovative and spirit led...that's Mark.