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ASM Exhibitions & Events

October 5 First Friday

three portraits with red running throughout
Left: Melanie Brown, center: Maureen Gruben, right: Sonya Kelliher-Combs

Free admission 4:30-7 pm
Co-curators Sonya Kelliher-Combs and Ellen Carrlee in the galleries 
Melanie Brown performance, 5 pm, atrium
Talk with Artist Maureen Gruben, 6:30 pm, lecture hall

About Musician Melanie Brown

Melanie Brown is a community organizer for SalmonState whose work is focused by salmon. She was born on Lingít Aaní, but her heritage is tied to the Yup'ik and Unangan people of Bristol Bay through her mother and Inupiaq people of Norton Sound by her father. Melanie is grateful for opportunities to share energy out to the world through song. She is also part of a music duo called Sunny Porch.

About Artist Maureen Gruben 

Maureen Gruben is an Inuvialuk artist from the village of Tuktoyaktuk on the Beaufort Sea in Northwest Territories, Canada. Her practice encompasses varied media, including video, photography, sculpture, textiles, land installations and large-scale public works. She shares an aesthetic affinity and mutual respect with Visceral exhibit co-curator Sonya Kelliher-Combs, who will be in the galleries with co-curator Ellen Carrlee.

Youth Activity for K-12: Puviaq (bird crop) ornament workshop

Puviaq held in palm of handSaturday, October 7, noon–2 pm

Create a bird crop ornament with Inuit contemporary artist Maureen Gruben from Tuktoyaktuk, NWT, Canada.

The puviaq is a beautiful gut ornament made in many communities across the circumpolar north from an inflated bird crop. The translucent globe reveals the foods, such as seeds and berries, that birds like grouse and ptarmigan hold for later use. This hands-on youth workshop will explore this special anatomy, why gut is a special material, and how to inflate a bird crop.

Drop-ins welcome, no registration necessary. Younger students are encouraged to bring an adult.

This program is partially funded by the citizens of the City and Borough of Juneau through sales tax revenues and is sponsored by the Friends of the Alaska State Library, Archives and Museum.

Indigenous Peoples’ Day / last day to see Visceral

Monday, October 9
Free admission 10 am–1 pm

Visceral: Verity, Legacy, Identity - Alaska Native Gut Knowledge and Perseverance is a group of three interrelated exhibitions co-curated by artist Sonya Kelliher-Combs that explore contemporary and historical Alaska Native issues, spotlighting gut as a conduit for Indigenous voices.

The exhibit trilogy

Visceral: Verity, a new exhibition of work by contemporary artist Sonya Kelliher-Combs, includes mixed-media installations that combine natural and synthetic materials and evoke questions of authentic experience, truth, abuse, transparency, and credibility. Kelliher-Combs is one of only a few artists working with marine mammal gut. (See more below.)

Visceral: Legacy expands Kelliher-Combs’s solo exhibition themes through a selection of objects from the museum’s permanent collection.

Visceral: Identity features gut parkas from across Alaska to highlight technical and historical aspects of this remarkable material in cross-cultural perspective.

About Sonya Kelliher-Combs

formline design with bright pink, blues, greens, and brown against dark backgroundGuest curator Sonya Kelliher-Combs is one of only a few artists working with marine mammal gut. Her mixed-media installations combine natural and synthetic materials and evoke questions of authentic experience, truth, abuse, transparency, and credibility. She brings to her art the richness of her experience growing up in Nome, her career as an internationally recognized artist, her life in Anchorage, and her insights as a person of Iñupiaq, Athabascan, and European heritage.

Image credit: Idiot Strings, Credible (detail), Sonya Kelliher-Combs 2022.

Friends of the State Library, Archives, and Museum Gala

October 14, 4-6 pm

The Friends of the State Library, Archives, and Museum (FoSLAM) will host a gala featuring live music with Trio Ballaenae, hors d’oeuvres, and a no host bar. A limited number of tickets will be available for Behind the Scenes Tours; tours start at 4:30 and 5:15. Tickets are available through the JAHC.

Apply for the Winter Lecture/Culture Share series

Check out our Artist Opportunites page to learn more. Apply to give a presentation on Zoom! Applications are due October 20.

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