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Sheldon Jackson Museum Welcomes Selina Alexander (Koyukon Athabascan)

by LAM Webmaster on 2023-09-15T12:50:00-08:00 in Events, Sheldon Jackson Museum | 0 Comments

Selina AlexanderThe Sheldon Jackson Museum is pleased to welcome Selena Alexander (Koyukon Athabascan) as the next artist-in-residence. Through the Alaska Native Artist Residency Program, Alexander will be working on her beaded, tufted, and sewn art at the gallery most days September 14-October 5. While she's here, Alexander will offer an artist talk and teach a two-part beaded earring making class.

Artist Talk

Alexander will give a talk on “Learning Art Forms,” on September 28 at 2 pm. She will share how she came to be a beader, porcupine quill worker, caribou tufter, and skin and fur sewer. To reserve a spot to attend the talk in-person, call the museum at (907) 747-8981. The talk will also be streamed live on Zoom, and the recording will be available later on the Friends of SJM YouTube channel.

Zoom information
Visit and input Meeting ID: 895 9860 0094 and Passcode: SELINA
Or visit

Earring Making Class

Alexander’s earring making class will take place in-person only at the museum October 4-5, 9:30 am-12 pm both days. The class is free of charge but there is a $25 materials fee due when you sign up. Students should plan to attend classes both days. Space is limited. Call the museum at (907) 747-8981 to reserve a spot.

From the artist:

I am the oldest of 14 children, 9 boys and 5 girls. I was born in Fairbanks to Lloyd and Amelia DeWilde. My mother is full Koyukon Athabascan from Huslia and my father is Welsh/Flemish from San Francisco. I was raised on the Yukon River between Ruby and Galena until age nine. We then moved to the North Fork of the Huslia River, about 45 air miles from Huslia. We lived a subsistence life of hunting, fishing, trapping and gardening. I was seven when my mother started me sewing and knitting doll clothes and my father started me trapping squirrels and weasels. At age 11 my father started me running a dog team. By age 13 my mother taught me how to make slippers and boots, more knitting and crocheting. My father taught me how to shoot guns, trap for mink, fox, otter and snare beaver. Mother taught me how to snare rabbits and ptarmigan, and how to fish with nets and poles. We also did a lot of drawing and crafts. Over the years I've learned more about beadwork from my grandmother, watching others, reading books, going to museums and workshops, and listening to my elders. My Indian grandmother and mother are excellent beadworkers and skinsewers. About twenty years ago Denise Hardesty taught a workshop on caribou tufting that I attended. My white grandfather was a well-known painter, artist and professor in San Francisco. I have 7 children.

The Alaska Native Artist Residency Program is made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum, Alaska Airlines, and private donors. To learn how you can support this vital program that brings culture bearers and artists like Selina from all over the state to the museum, visit

Visitors can come to the museum to meet Selina and see examples of her fine work most days Monday-Friday, 10 am-noon and 2-4 pm. She will be in-residence until October 5. For specific schedule details, visit the Exhibits and Events page, friendsofsjm.comFOSJM on Facebook, or FOSJM on Instagram

Summer hours at the Sheldon Jackson Museum are Monday-Saturday, 9 am-4:30 pm and Sunday, 1-4:30 pm, closed holidays. Summer admission is $9 for adults and $8 for seniors. Visitors 18 and under are admitted free of charge. Assistance is available for visitors with special needs. For more information on operations, events, or the residency program, contact the museum at (907) 747-8981.

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