Sealaska Heritage


Northwest Coast Art
Bronze posts to be unveiled

SHI will publicly unveil three exquisite bronze house posts, which will be on prominent display in front of the Walter Soboleff Building in Juneau. The posts were made by three emerging master artists and are absolutely stunning to behold. Join us at 1:30, Sunday, Aug. 26. Everyone is welcome! (Flyer)

Educ Conference Recap

Attendees and presenters came from across Alaska and even as far as New Zealand to attend SHI’s second annual Culturally Responsive Education (CRE) Conference in Juneau. The CRE conference was created to provide teachers and administrators with an understanding of issues affecting Alaska Native students...

nathan jackson exhibit
shi seeking pieces

SHI is planning a retrospective on the famed Tlingit artist Nathan Jackson, clan leader of the Lukaax.ádi, and is currently seeking pieces. The exhibit will feature work made by Jackson from the institute’s collection and pieces on loan. SHI currently is seeking carvings, jewelry, prints and any other items made by Jackson.


New Artist Residencies
Coming Soon

Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) has launched a new program to offer Alaska Native artists’ residencies, which will include dedicated work areas, access to archives and collections and monetary support. The goal is to provide artists with a substantial amount of independent studio time...


New Scholarship Program
NWC Arts, Museum Studies

SHI will offer three new scholarships this fall for art and museum studies students enrolled at the University of Alaska Southeast and the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA). Through the program, SHI will give $35,250 in scholarships to Alaska Natives in four categories...


Lemon Creek Correctional Center inmate and Tlingit and Tsimshian artist David Guthrie was clueless about his culture and unsure about his future before he got caught up in a world of copper, creativity and camaraderie. “I feel that your class and the carving classes have saved my life"...

Old designs revealed

SHI, in partnership with the T’a̱kdeintaan Clan, Mt. Fairweather House of Hoonah, has acquired infrared scans and enhanced photos of an old Tlingit box drum that reveal design elements previously not visible. The images exposed more of the formline design on the drum, which was repatriated in 2011 to the T’a̱kdeintaan.

Horn Carving Workshops

Sealaska Heritage will sponsor horn-carving workshps in Sitka, Ketchikan and Juneau to in an effort to ensure the endangered art of goat horn spoon carving are passed on to future generations. Click link to apply by community.

Job Opportunity

Opportunities: SHI is seeking an assistant retail manager, a retail sales associate and an art youth instructor in Angoon. 


Sealaska Heritage will sponsor a formline class in Hoonah taught by the award-winning artist David A. Boxley. Boxley is highly-skilled in formline design and took Best of Show and Best of Formline at SHI’s 2016 Juried Art Show and Competition. App deadline: Sept. 10.  (Flyer)

In the news:
cultural conference

By Alex McCarthy, Juneau Empire—This week, educators from all around Alaska and the world will be in Juneau for a conference to learn more about culturally aware approaches in classrooms. The conference, called “Our Cultural Landscape,” is sponsored by the Sealaska Heritage Institute and other organizations in town.

In the news:
Spruce-root weaving

By Alex McCarthy, Juneau Empire—Years ago, Hans Chester watched as the late Tlingit scholar Nora Keixwnéi Dauenhauer wove a spruce-root basket. Chester, who now works with the Sealaska Heritage Institute as a Tlingit language and culture assistant, said he couldn’t quite make out what Dauenhauer was doing because she was doing it so quickly.

Conference to kick off
Culture in Schools

SHI will kick off its second education conference next week for educators in more than 30 communities in its effort to improve academic success of Native students by giving teachers tools to effectively instruct people from other cultures. (Conference Webpage) (KINY Interview)

Native languages
Summit Dates Set

Sealaska Heritage will hold  a regional Native language summit for the remaining fluent speakers of Lingít (Tlingit), Xaad Kíl (Haida) and Sm’algyax (Tsimshian). The three-day summit, Voices of Our Ancestors, is scheduled Nov. 13-15 in Juneau. SHI will cover transportation and hotel costs for fluent speakers and provide lunches to participants.

Spruce Root weaving

SHI is teaming with a world travel company to document on video how to harvest and prepare spruce roots and do spruce-root weaving, an ancient Northwest Coast art practice that is considered to be endangered. The video will feature master Haida weaver and teacher Delores Churchill.


Sealaska Heritage will sponsor a Gumboot Camp in juneau from July 23-27 for Alaska Native children ages 4 and 5. This event is part of Baby Raven Reads, an early-literacy program. Space is limited.  (Flyer)

In the news:
Native Languages

By Liam Niemeyer, KRBD—The U.S. Forest Service launched a webpage Friday featuring audio recordings and pronunciations of various wildlife such as “beaver” or “fish” in different Alaska Native languages. For example, the pronunciation for “black bear” is “s’eek” in the Tlingit language.


An undergraduate student at the Alaska Pacific University who is pursuing a degree in counseling psychology has won Sealaska Heritage Institute’s 2018 Judson L. Brown Leadership Award. SHI,through its Scholarship Committee, has chosen Sharnel Yaagál Vale, a Tlingit Raven from the Kwaashk’I Kwáan Clan.

Celebration 2020
Dates Set

The next Celebration will be held June 10-13, 2020, in Juneau. People are encouraged to reserve hotel rooms early, as space fills up quickly. The lead dance group will be the combined Shx'at Ḵwáan and Kaatslitaan groups of Wrangell.


A Washington family has donated an exquisite collection of Northwest Coast objects to Sealaska Heritage so that it may be studied by artists and scholars. It includes finely-woven spruce-root basketry and several exceptional mountain goat horn spoons. 

In the news:
Issue evokes trauma

By Jacob Resneck, KTOO—The sights and sounds of children being taken from their families by federal immigration agents is reopening decades-old wounds for some Alaska Natives. “When I first saw them I was just absolutely appalled,” Rosita Worl said. Worl was forcibly taken from her parents at the age of 6. 

Stop Border Separations

I want to express my appreciation to Sen. Lisa Murkowski for opposing the separation of families at the U.S. border and demanding an immediate halt to this “cruel, tragic” practice. For me and for many, many other Alaska Natives, this issue is personal and resurrects old wounds.


See highlights of Sealaska Heritage Institute's activities in 2017 including an art auction, new children's books, exhibits and more! (Booklet)


Throughout the third and fourth day of Celebration 2018, dance group leaders spoke of the biennial event as a time of renewal, using their moments at the microphone to share words of support, encouragement, and healing with the hundreds of people gathered in Centennial Hall, and thousands more viewers watching the broadcast.