Alaska Native Artwork, Inc.
A Non-profit organization
To build up Alaska Native Artists with the resources and tools to ensure a successful Journey of an Alaska Native Artist to help carry out our heritage, culture and traditions.
Today, our mission supporting existing artists to help train and give experience to aspiring artists. Through our program, we sponsor aspiring Artists from underrepresented populations to learn the skills of carving, encourage their unique artistic expression, and help keep our artistic culture alive.
Providing Workspace to Local Artists
A.N.A.I. offers workspace, access to tools, photography services, advisors to help artists start their own business, and collaboration for events and sales. Many of the tools shared by the Artists are difficult to purchase, such as a 17-inch bandsaw, Oscillating spindle sander, 12-inch combo disc, belt sander, foredoms, Benchtop lathe, any many other tools offering a real advantage to the artists. There is also access to various marketing platforms and social media available to members.
Promoting Quality and Authenticity
We are committed to fighting misrepresentation in the marketplace with both the authenticity of Walrus Ivory and Native-made artwork.
Over the years, we have noticed an increase in the misrepresentation of Alaska Native made art in the marketplace. Unethical vendors sell fake and imitation Alaska native art as Native Made. Similarly, non-Native made Alaska Native Artwork has been advertised and sold as authentic Native American made.
We created resources such as Walrus Ivory blogs, artist profiles, and educational blog posts for consumers to educate themselves on buying authentic handmade Alaska Native Artwork.
· In our shared workspace, we exchange industry knowledge and learnings to improve our craft. Continual learning is how we keep our craft alive!
· Promoting Wellness through A.A. / N.A. Selfcare and other resources available in our community.
· Providing tables at artshows and events that are too expensive for artists to obtain in this economy.
· Providing temporary workspace for out-of-town villagers that are doing artshows or needing a workspace for repairs or creating.
· Providing materials such as Walrus Ivory, Whalebone and baleen to the artists for 12 months to help artists gain a foothold and be able to be self sufficient
· Provide workspace for 12 months so that the artist can afford the get their own space and tools or an opportunity to become a Mentor/ teacher at the agency.
· Provide financial education about banking, savings and budgeting, to ensure that the artists are well prepared when the 12 month program ends for them that they can be self-reliant and disciplined to follow their own rules of managing their money.
· Our own Gallery within the Workspace provided enables artists to interact with buyers and give live demonstrations and education on Alaska Native Artworks.
Art is our culture
We have grown up as sanders/ helpers and workers for our fathers, grandfathers, grandmothers, that taught us how to create our visions of the handed down patterns and stories that make what our art is today, we wish to encourage and help others grow as an Alaska native artist, to show them what it takes to be successful in being a master craftsman carver, to inspire growth while giving them a place to carve with the materials needed and the tools to succeed.
DONATE TO OUR CAUSE
Invest in the future of handcrafted Alaska Native Artwork and our people.
Your Donation helps each artist for the 12 months at 1600 a month per artist enables an artist 2 walrus tusks a month, 1 baleen blade and 5 lbs. of whalebone, workplace supplies such as sandpaper, superglue, buffing compound, and carving bits, plus the workspace and guidance throughout their journey of becoming self-reliant, clean and sober, successful in every aspect of an Alaskan Native Artist.
We will be renting a warehouse with 16 workspaces available for artists to learn to become a successful master carver and self-disciplined for success.
The tools that I have will be available for all artists to use which I have.
Through this 15-20 Men and women will be transformed into the artists they desire to become and a positive member in the Native community.
Our Non-profit organization structure:
Mark Tetpon & John Tetpon (Founders)
Mark Tetpon, CEO
Dennis Pungowiyi, President
George Wichers, Vice President
Robert McCoy Apangalook, Secretary
Caleigha Gotthardt, Treasurer