Carver Tommy Joseph to give TEDx talk in Sitka Saturday

Acclaimed carver Tommy Joseph will give a talk on Tlingit armor construction as part of the second annual TEDxSitka event, scheduled for Saturday at the Odess Theater in Allen Hall from 1-6 p.m. Joseph is one of eleven featured speakers from throughout the U.S. who will present short talks on a wide range of topics. Tickets for the day-long conference are $25.

Joseph is of the Eagle Moiety, Kaagwaantaan Clan. He has been actively engaged in Northwest Coast carving since the 1980s as an instructor, interpreter demonstrator and as a commissioned artist. He has produced a wide range of artwork including 35-foot totems, smaller house posts, carved and inlaid masks and a wide range of bentwood containers. He also has replicated Tlingit ceremonial at.oow (treasured objects) and armor. Since the early 1990s, he has been in charge of the carving shop at the Southeast Alaska Indian Cultural Center in Sitka, demonstrating and interpreting Northwest Coast art for tourists. Currently he runs the Raindance Gallery at 205 Monastery Street in Sitka.    

Other TEDxSitka speakers include Camas Davis, founder of the Portland Meat Collective, Vietnamese-American author lê thi diem thúy, community organizer Ray Friedlander, clown and arts educator W.T. McRae, Steve Grody, author of Graffiti LA, guitarist and composer Benjamin Seretan, art critic Jarrett Moran, Harvard Design and Technology fellow Christian Ervin, carillonneur (ringer of church bells) and painter Julie Zhu and music historian Paul Cox. A complete list of speakers is available at

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading” that began as a four-day conference in California 25 years ago. TED Conference speakers have included Bill Gates, Al Gore, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. TED talks are available online for free at

TEDx programs, such as the event in Sitka, are independently organized talks licensed by the TED organization. For more information, visit


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