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Sealaska Heritage Institute accepting applications for Juried Art Competition

Posted: February 16, 2012 - 1:06am

Sealaska Heritage Institute is accepting applications for its sixth biennial Juried Art Show and Competition during Celebration 2012, scheduled June 7-9 in Juneau.

For the first time, Native artists under the age of 16 will be able to compete in the event, which showcases a broad range of pieces made by the indigenous people of Southeast Alaska. Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian people are known for their art, and the institute’s trustees believe it’s important for young people to participate, said SHI President Rosita Worl.

“We know that there are a lot of young people out there who are doing art and we thought it would be an opportunity to showcase their work,” Worl said in a press release.

Jurors will be Tlingit Nathan Jackson, a world-renowned artist, and Peter Corey, a scholar in Northwest Coast arts who was curator of the Sheldon Jackson Museum until his recent retirement.

Besides the youth category, artists will compete for best of show and in two other categories: Northwest Coast customary, and Northwest Coast inspired customary (formerly known as traditional and contemporary respectively in past competitions). The categories were changed by the institute’s Native Artist Committee, which gives guidance on SHI’s art programs, Worl said.

“They decided that the more appropriate term would be customary. It’s customary art. And then they moved on to say ‘Northwest Coast inspired customary art’ to reflect the changes in our art tradition,” she said.

The committee includes Jackson, Steve Brown, Delores Churchill and Nicholas Galanin.

Applications are available at www.sealaskaheritage.org and must be postmarked by March 21. The awards ceremony will be June 6.

Sealaska Heritage Institute is a private, nonprofit founded in 1980 to promote cultural diversity and cross-cultural understanding. The institute is governed by a Board of Trustees and guided by a Council of Traditional Scholars. Its mission is to perpetuate and enhance Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian cultures of Southeast Alaska.

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