About the Artist:
Barry Howe is a lifelong native of southern Wisconsin. Born and raised in Madison, he has been a product development engineer for over 25 years, with an interest in nature and the sciences.
Being an avid outdoor enthusiast, his love of trout fishing led him to seek out the remote corners of the state. On one such trip in 1993 he found his first “arrowhead,” which ignited in him a passion for these fascinating prehistoric tools and weapons.
This passion led him to become an active member of several Archaeological Societies, and to amass an entire library dedicated to the subject. He still hunts stone projectile points regularly at Indian sites, with a collection numbering in the thousands of pieces.
Not content with simply collecting these fascinating artifacts, his scientific curiosity led him to learn the ancient - and nearly forgotten - art of flintknapping, the making of chipped stone tools. Years of patient self-instruction and experimentation made him an accomplished knapper. The result of his work can be seen in his beautiful reproductions of classic North American points and other flaked stone weaponry.
Not interested in making tourist kitsch, Barry’s interest lies in the authentic replication of functional prehistoric tools and weaponry, utilizing the same materials, tools and techniques used by the aboriginal craftsmen who inhabited this continent 12 millennia before Columbus arrived. He has performed flintknapping demonstrations for archaeological societies, public schools, the University of Wisconsin, Boy Scouts of America, the Gem and Mineral Society, and appeared on a Wisconsin Public Television series. He has also created museum-quality replica stone tools for the Wisconsin State Historical Society.
While primarily interested in the replication of North American artifacts, Barry likes to emphasize that flintknapping was by no means a technology exclusive to American Indians. Everyone, everywhere, is descended from ancestors who went through the Stone Age. He points out that the art of flintknapping is considered to have reached its zenith during the Neolithic period in what is today Denmark.
In striving to create faithful, functional replicas of Stone Age weapons, this artist successfully melds modern appreciation and primal appeal. The end products are neither toys nor kitsch, and truly embody the meaning of – Lethal Lithics.