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The 2021 Alaska Native Artist Residency Program

by LAM Webmaster on 2021-04-13T09:37:00-08:00 in Sheldon Jackson Museum, Events, Museums | Comments

The Sheldon Jackson Museum is pleased to announce the selection of the Alaska Native artists for this year’s Alaska Native Artist Residency Program, a program funded by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum. Selected from a pool of applicants, these artists will come to the museum from all over the state to share their art forms and culture over the course of the next five months. 

Between May and September, the Sheldon Jackson Museum Alaska Native artists-in-residence will work in the museum gallery, provide free hands-on classes teaching their art forms, give lectures, and provide the museum with material culture consultations on artifacts. Artists-in-residence will connect the general public to their culture(s) through creation of art in an open studio-like format. Visitors will have opportunities to engage with artists and learn about Alaska Native traditions, art forms, artists’ techniques, and sources of inspiration.

Artists-in-residence will receive an artist stipend for their work, lodging, and travel to and from Sitka, and will have a variety of opportunities to study the museum’s permanent collection and educate staff through “cultural consultations.” As part of their residency, artists have scheduled time to study artifacts on exhibit and in collections storage. Through the study of artifacts at the museum, artists have an invaluable opportunity to examine material culture created by their ancestors. The benefits of this study time extend to the museum staff who gain priceless insight into artifacts as the artists share their knowledge and observations. The indispensable information captured in these cultural consultations is recorded in museum records, adding to the knowledge of present-day staff and members of the public and to future generations of museum goers, researchers, artists, and Sheldon Jackson Museum staff.

This summer, the Alaska Native Artist Residency Program will include the following six artists:

  • Danielle Stickman, Koyukon and Dena’ina Athabascan beader, fish skin sewer, and mixed media artist (May 15-30)
  • Laine Rinehart, Tlingit ravenstail and Chilkat weaver (June 4-June 20)
  • Robert Hoffmann, Tlingit carver and painter (June 23-July 10)
  • Rico Worl, Tlingit and Athabascan computer-aided designer and sculptor (July 11-26)
  • Neva Mathias, Cup’ik doll, grass basket and dance fan maker (July 28-Aug. 12)
  • Chloe French, Tlingit textile artist, Chilkat Weaver and beader (Aug. 21-Sept. 5)

In addition to creating art at the museum and studying the permanent collection, resident artists will also hold lectures and hands-on-classes. The talks and classes will likely be held in-person but may also be on Zoom. Contact the museum for information about each class.

The 2021 special artist-in-residency events include:

  • Ravenstail Pendant-Making Class with Laine Rinehart (meets six times: June 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, and 20)
  • "Time Warp: An Exploration of Time in Chilkat Weaving," artist talk by Laine Rinehart on June 20
  • Block Print Making Class with Robert Hoffmann (meets five times: June 24, 25, 26, 27, 30)
  • "Where We Meet: How Cultural and Historical Context Helps Us Appreciate Objects More Fully," artist talk by Robert Hoffmann on July 3
  • Adobe for Formline Class with Rico Worl (meets: July 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 21, 22, 23, 25)
  • "Forming Lines: From Star Wars to Formline," artist talk by Rico Worl on July 24
  • Grass Basket Making Class with Neva Mathias (meets five times: July 31, Aug. 1, 4, 5, 6)
  • "Artist Residency Recap," artist talk by Neva Mathias on Aug. 7
  • Applique Octopus Bag Making Class with Chloe French (meets six times: Aug. 25, 26, 27, 29, Sept. 1, 2)
  • "Growing Tradition: Working Traditionally and Using Tradition in New Ways," artist talk by Chloe French on Aug. 28

All classes require advance registration. Students are required to obtain materials or purchase a pre-made class pack of materials. Some classes have age and space limitations. For information on the classes, materials required, or to sign up for a class, call the museum at (907) 747-8981. For any information on artist talks or further details on days and times artists are working in the museum, 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 at

The Native Artist Residency Program is made possible through the support of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Friends of the Sheldon Jackson Museum, and private donations.

Summer hours at the Sheldon Jackson Museum are 9 a.m. to 4:00 p.m, Wednesday through Sunday, except 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.The museum is an official “Sitka COVID Conscious Business” through the City & Borough of Sitka and follows state of Alaska guidelines for Covid mitigation. For more information on operations or details on Covid mitigation practices, contact the museum by calling (907) 747-8981.


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