NASAA Notes: March 2016

March 7, 2016

Alaska: Professional Development for Alaska Native Artists

Alaska Native Artist Resource WorkbookAlaska, unique in many ways, not only has the largest proportion of Native Americans in the country—with 14.8% of residents identifying as Alaska Native—but also is the largest state by land area and one of the least populated. In an effort to help Alaska Native artists thrive in the face of geographical and other challenges, the Alaska State Council on the Arts (ASCA) has partnered with the CIRI Foundation, the nonprofit arm of the Cook Inlet Region tribal corporation, to develop and publish the Alaska Native Artist Resource Workbook. The workbook is designed to help Alaska Native artists develop sustainable microbusinesses. In addition to discussing effective business development and marketing practices, the workbook offers guidelines and suggests opportunities for selling artwork made with traditional materials. It also reviews state and federal laws regulating artists’ use of wildlife and addresses issues of art fraud affecting Alaska Natives. In the next phase of their partnership, ASCA and the CIRI Foundation will offer hands-on trainings in several locations around the state building on the exercises of the resource workbook, which will be updated continuously in response to users’ feedback and new information from the field. To learn more, contact ASCA Native Arts Program Director Saunders McNeill.
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