SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Juried Art Show Attracts 64 Entries
By Marie L. Monyak


April 18, 2006

Ketchikan, Alaska - The Eleventh Annual Hummingbird Festival in Ketchikan had been well underway for several weeks when the Juried Art Show held its opening reception this past Friday at the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau on Front Street.

jgp Juried Art Show

Gayle Nixon, Branch Manager of the Alaska Natural History Association Book Store, and Leslie Swada, Education Specialist for the Forest Service.
Photo by Marie L. Monyak

This is the first year that the festival included a Juried Art Show and to say the results were a tremendous success would be an understatement. The opening reception was complete with hors d'oeuvres and beverages and the room was crowded with those anxious to see the wonderful and creative art submitted from all over the state.

The show was sponsored by the Tongass National Forest, the Alaska Natural History Association and the Ketchikan Visitor's Bureau. Leslie Swada, Education Specialist for the Forest Service is to be commended for her tireless effort in putting together an extensive month long list of activities, events and presentations with a schedule that flowed effortlessly.

Gayle Nixon, Branch Manager of the Alaska Natural History Book Store deserves recognition as well for her assistance and participation in the show. Twenty-five percent of all monies raised by the book store are returned to the public in the form of educational programs. It's these funds that were used as awards for the seven winners of the art show.

With all the galleries in town already booked for the month, Executive Director Patti Mackey offered the Ketchikan Visitor's Bureau as the site for the art show giving many residents their first view inside a building usually peopled by summertime tourists.

Those who attended the opening sipped their wine and nibbled on crudités as they strolled from one end of the building to the other treated by over 64 artists interpretations of the migratory birds of Alaska.

Artists from around the state were invited to participate and some entries came from as far away as Anchorage and Cordova. Artists from Petersburg, Craig, even Port Protection as well as many local residents submitted their work. The criteria for entry in the show consisted of recent, original artwork using any medium and inspired by the birds on the official migratory bird list provided.

jpg People's Choice

"Spring Odyssey" by Pamela Peterson
Photo by Marie L. Monyak

jpg Best of Show

"The Traveling Wilbirdy's" by Diane Palmer
Photo by Marie L. Monyak

Those artists that chose to offer their art for sale would be pledging 25% of their proceeds to the Alaska Natural History Association and much of the artwork was for sale to the delight of those who attended with checkbooks in hand.

The choice of medium was as varied as the artists themselves. Of the two-dimensional entries, oil, acrylic and watercolor paintings were plentiful alongside pencil sketches, fiber art, photography and collage. There were fewer three dimensional entries but they were just as diverse in the medium used. There was wood carving, clay sculpture, beadwork, pottery, caustic and box sculpture. The judges had to know their job wouldn't be easy with so much wonderful talent competing against one another.

Of the 64 entries, everyone was a winner whether they were awarded a ribbon or not. Those people who came in to view the artwork each decided on their own personal "best of show" but the biggest winner was the people Ketchikan who realized what a large and wonderful artist's community we have right in our own backyard!

And the Juried Art Show Winners are:

    "Spring Odyssey" by Pamela Peterson
    "The Traveling Wilbirdy's" by Diane Palmer
    "Bald Eagle" by Erika VanWalden
    "Various Birds Hiding in Foliage" by Joe Piston
    "Varied Thrush" by Megan Harford
    "Abe" by Rebecca Michaelson
    "The Kestrel" by Gregg Johnson

The Hummingbird Festival Juried Art Show Exhibit will be on display through Friday, April 28th at the Ketchikan Visitor's Bureau on Front Street. Don't miss it!


Marie L. Monyak is a freelance writer living in Ketchikan, Alaska.
A freelance writer is an uncommitted independent writer
who produces and sells articles to a publisher such as SitNews.
For freelance writing services and costs contact Marie at mlmx1[at]

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