Sheldon Jackson Museum Visiting Artist Program & National Endowment for the Arts Grant Award
SITKA – The Sheldon Jackson Museum is pleased to announce that the Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum have been awarded a grant in the amount of $24,000 from the National Endowment for the Arts. The award was issued through the Art Works II Grant in the category of Folk & Traditional Arts.
Applications for the Art Works II grants were submitted to the Arts Endowment last summer and reflected the wide range of performances, exhibitions, and activities that the agency has traditionally funded. At the end of March 2020, the listed projects were approved, followed by two months of extensive technical assistance in which NEA agency staff worked one-on-one with hundreds of organizations to adjust their projects to meet the new reality created by the pandemic. Changes include postponing activities until the museum reopens and taking some activities virtual.
In the popular Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum-sponsored Native Artist Residency Program, artists from around the state fill residencies at the museum, during which time they study the collections and share their work with the public through artist lectures, hands-on workshops, and demonstrations.
This year, from July until mid-October, the museum is hosting a series of four artists-in-residence. Artists include Tsimshian carver and silver engraver Abel Ryan (July 1-17), Alutiiq/Sugpiaq gut and fish skin sewer, grass basket weaver, and beader June Pardue (July 24-August 8), Alutiiq kayak maker, mask and paddle carver, and traditional tool maker Alfred Naumoff (September 14-October 1), and Tlingit regalia maker Pam Johnson (October 1-18).
This year’s residency program will include a virtual public talk by Abel Ryan entitled “Stopping and Restarting, What My Journey Through the Covid 19 Shutdown” on Thursday, July 2nd at 3pm; a public, virtual painting class on formline design with Abel Ryan on Saturday, July 11th at 2pm; a 1 hour virtual Residency Recap Talk by Abel Ryan on Thursday, July 16th at 3pm ; a two-part virtual earring making class using porcupine quills and deer/moose hide or fish skin with June Pardue on Sat., July 25th and Tuesday, July 28th from 2-3:30pm (both days); a virtual public talk on Salmon leather by June Pardue on Sat., Aug. 1st at 3pm; a public 1 hour virtual Residency Recap Talk by June Pardue on Saturday, August 8th at 3pm ; an intensive model kayak building workshop with Alfred Naumoff (dates, time to be set); a public talk on Cultural Identity Through Fabric by Pam Johnson (date, time and format to be set); and a child’s vest regalia making workshop with Pam Johnson (date, time and format to be set).
The classes are free but in some instances, require advanced ordering of materials online in advance. Some classes have age restrictions. 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 at
The Native Artist Residency Program is made possible through the support of the National Endowment for the Arts, Alaska Airlines, the Friends of the Sheldon Jackson Museum, and private donations.