His talent is transferred genetically:
During the Mississippi time period from which he draws his inspiration, the potters had mastered form and function and were experimenting with individuality and creativity: they had begun to bend the rules. The pots were evolving from pots that were solely functional into creative pieces of art.
"I feel in order for an artist to bend the rules he or she must first know the rules. Like the potters from the Mississippi time period, I am now at a point where I am starting to bend the rules. Although, I continue to perpetuate and preserve Southeastern pottery, I challenge myself by experimenting with size, shapes and techniques while making every effort to maintain the quality and purity of my traditions as I evolve artistically. I want my work to show innovation, incorporate new ideas and reveal the vitality of my society. I want it to both tipify the traditions of my ancestors, and embody my modern Cherokee experience in each piece," states Queen.
His contemporary pots are not just reproductions of ancient techniques. They instead represent the expressions of traditions and spiritual values of a people, and provide a glimpse into the soul of a civilization during the Mississippi time period at a height of ceramic technology. "My work should be judged by the same criteria that are applied to ancient pottery. Age does not determine the value of work. Instead, the value of ancient work is judged by the mastery of technique, materials used, individuality, and representation of a particular period of time,"said Queen. These are the same qualities that exist in his pottery today.
"Each creation has a specific time, place, function and design relative to my spirituality at the time. Art is an essential element to my life but only a part of a whole. My experiences, traditions, and spirituality continue to guide the production of my art, while preserving the spirit of the past, present and the future", according to Queen.
His symbolic culture is also deeply embedded in his traditional stamped pots. They are tradition, true traditional Cherokee pots. They were created with hand-dug clay the same as thousands of years ago, sifted by hand, kneaded by hand, hand-coiled, stamped with hand carved wooden paddles, and fired in a traditional pit fire. They are created at the same sophisticated level of quality as the ancient Mississippian pots. They are created with a consistency of thickness, depth in the incisions, and fired at a precise temperature vitrifying the clay body, rendering the pots waterproof. These are skills learned only from a knowledge and mastery of the clay.
There are currently only about fourteen thousand members of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians left and roughly, two-hundred and fifty thousand members of the Cherokee Nation and United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma. To my knowledge, he is the only Cherokee potter that is still producing a true Cherokee pot in this manner. Unless others follow his lead, he will be the last traditional Cherokee potter.