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Sheldon Jackson Museum Welcomes Tsimshian Artist-In-Residence Abel Ryan

by Amy Carney on 2020-07-02T15:00:20-08:00 in Sheldon Jackson Museum, Events | Comments

Abel Ryan holds a drum with a painted depiction of an octopus.

SITKA – The Sheldon Jackson Museum is pleased to welcome Tsimshian artist Abel Ryan as the first artist in this year’s Alaska Native Artist Residency Program. Ryan will begin his residency on July 1st and will be at the museum through the end of the day July 16th.

While in-residence at the Sheldon Jackson Museum, Ryan will work most days between 12pm and 4pm and will offer several virtual public programs. He will give a Virtual Artist Talk on Thursday, July 2nd at 3pm entitled "Stopping and Restarting: My Journey Through the Covid 19 Shutdown", a Virtual Painting Class on Saturday, July 11th from 3-4pm, and a Virtual Recap Residency Talk on Thursday, July 16th from 3-4pm. Join the July 2nd talk on Zoom.

Abel Ryan was born in Ketchikan, Alaska, but has long called Metlakatla on the Annette Island Reserve his home. He is a Tsimshian member of the Metlakatla Indian Community and an adopted member of the Wolf Clan. He has a BA from Sheldon Jackson College and a BFA from the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Abel studied traditional Tsimshian art under master carver, Jack Hudson of Metlakatla and has been carving independently since he was eleven years old. Working in the medium of wood and metal, Abel produces masks, bowls, spoons, pipes, ladles, plaques, combs, jewelry and other hand carved and painted items. He is also proficient in two-dimensional graphic design using Northwest Coast formline art. His work may be found in art galleries in Ketchikan, Sitka, and Juneau and in private collections across the country.

Virtual Alaska Native Artist Residency classes and talks are sponsored by the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum and will be viewable through Zoom. The link for virtual talks will be published on the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum Facebook Page and people who sign up for virtual classes will be emailed the required link. There is no fee to attend a virtual Alaska Native Artist Residency class or talk, but in some cases, there are student limits and/or student age limits for the classes. Some classes do require ordering of materials online in advance. To obtain more details, and materials lists, call (907) 747-8981. To view events related to the Native Artist Residency Program, visit the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum Facebook page or the Alaska State Museum website

This year’s Alaska Native Artist Residency Program is made possible with an Art Works II Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and with support from the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum, Alaska Airlines, and private donations.

The Sheldon Jackson Museum is currently open by reservation only Wednesday through Saturday between 12pm and 4pm. Admission fees for adults is $5, $4 for ages 65+, and free for youth 18 and under or for Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum or Alaska State Museum members. The public should call (907) 747-8981 to make a reservation or to inquire about operating hours. As of July 8th, the museum will be open to the public without reservation Wednesday through Saturday between 12pm and 4pm. The public should continue to pay by credit card. The Sheldon Jackson Museum is compliant with State mandates pertaining to Alaska State Libraries, Archives and Museums. Find more information on COVID-19 health mandates and advisories.

Media Contact:
Patience Frederiksen

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