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7th Annual Community Supported Art (CSA) Box on Sale June 1

The 7th annual Community Supported Art (CSA) box is available for purchase on June 1. Artist reception and remarks are June 7th at 6pm at Bunnell Street Arts Center. CSA artist talks follow the First Friday opening and artist talks of Kathy Smith and Bonilyn Parker’s June exhibit.This program, now in its seventh year, elevates the practice of collecting work by local artists to strengthen the economic fabric of Homer. This year’s CSA opened applications to Alaska artists alongside Homer ones. The unique collection of small works created especially for the 2024 CSA box features six Anchorage artists: Danielle Larsen, Kellie Kekich, Krista Etzwiler, Meriam Linder, Natasha Toyukak-Johnson and Sarahlily Stein. Join us for an artist talk and reception on June 7th, in conjunction with June’s First Friday exhibit opening. The 2024 collection includes:

  • Danielle Larsen: Watercolor paintings in acrylic magnetic frames
  • Kellie Kekich: Alaskan wildlife playing cards
  • Krista Etzwiler: Ceramic pinch pots on wood
  • Meriam Linder: Handmade Book
  • Natasha Toyukak-Johnson: Fishskin with fur or bent wire fish earrings
  • Sarahlily Stein: Natural watercolor palette

“Making an edition of books for the CSA will be a graduation of sorts, my first commercial venture in bookbinding. It’s exciting to imagine these blank journals, with all their potential, going out in the world.” -Meriam Linder

“Participating in the CSA would be my first-time using art to support myself financially.” -Sarahlily Stein

Danielle Larsen: Watercolor paintings on paper, (2.5×3.5”) in acrylic magnetic frames

As a watercolor artist based in the stunning landscapes of Anchorage, Alaska, I am inspired by the raw beauty and vibrant colors of my surroundings. My artistic style incorporates intricate details and delicate brushstrokes, resulting in mesmerizing miniature pieces that can be displayed as a paper weight or just art for small spaces.

With a deep connection to my Inupiaq, Koyukon, and Aleut heritage, my paintings pay homage to the rich cultural traditions of the Native people of Alaska. Through my work, I invite viewers to embark on a journey through my beloved home and experience the awe-inspiring landscapes and diverse cultural influences that make Alaska truly one-of-a-kind.

Kellie Kekich: Alaskan Wildlife Playing Cards

I firmly believe nature is the best designer, and I’m deeply inspired by the Alaskan landscape. My recent art project features hand drawn illustrations of Alaskan wildlife in the format of playing cards. If you know me, you’ll see that I always carry a deck of cards and a set of dice with me wherever I go. I believe games are a fantastic way to connect with friends and loved ones, to pass the time and also bring a bit of joy and mischief to everyday life. This set of illustrations is dear to my heart, as it encompasses the spirit of Alaskan wildlife and my love of games. I hope each image can inspire conversation and love for Alaska and all of its creatures.

Kellie Kekich is a Homer-based artist and landscape designer. She is a multidisciplinary artist working in a variety of mediums and styles, ranging from traditional oil painting to digital and multimedia illustration and design. Kellie studied classical realism in the 19th century style at Grand Central Atelier in New York City. Although her art often strays from realism, she believes a strong foundational skill of drawing is imperative to making great art. Her love of design extends beyond paintbrushes and pencils. For the past ten years, Kellie has spent her summers landscaping, and as of 2022, she owns and operates the local landscaping company Gardens by Design.

Krista Etzwiler: Ceramic pinch pots on driftwood or cottonwood bark

I enjoy bringing nature-inspired works to life. Using organic hand-formed clay, driftwood, glass, and a variety of color combinations, each of my creations are unique, bright and cheerful. With each of these decorative pieces, I experiment with a variety of shapes and textures to capture the vibrant beauty of the outdoors. Each piece is a story of exploration, emotion and discovery, conveying feelings and experiences to be interpreted by the individual.

As a ceramic artist based in Homer, Alaska, I work with clay to explore my own formation. Through each piece, I investigate how our life experiences can shape and reshape our destination, both metaphorically and literally. I’m fascinated by the unexpected shifts, those which we might not observe while the transformation is taking place, like raw clay in an artist’s hands. My work celebrates the power of time to tell the stories that have shaped us, acknowledging the beauty in each creation and the complexities of our own ever-changing journeys.

Meriam Linder: Handmade Book

Through the deliberate craft of bookbinding I lovingly collect, create and stitch materials into journals. My practice combines traditional techniques and materials with improvisation and adaptation. The serendipity of collecting and repurposing disparate papers and fabrics sparks my creativity. I enjoy hand-dyeing linen thread, selecting cotton fabrics to transform into book cloth, and trimming found papers into fresh sheets. I stitch strong, lay-flat pages and reinforce the spine and cover with custom glue blends. Field testing guides my technique, culminating in sturdy, functional and inspiring journals. I delight in each blank book’s potential to spark and capture self‑expression.

I’m a Homer-grown artist, crafter and serial entrepreneur. I explore a broad range of mediums from antler carving and fiber arts to watercolors, bookbinding and photography. As a passionate, hands-on learner I enjoy fostering creativity in others. I open my studio and share supplies for playful, collaborative art making sessions. The mix of personalities, abilities and styles is inspiring. Maybe you can join me!

Natasha Toyukak-Johnson: Handmade Earrings (fishskin with fur or bent wire fish dangles)

I am deeply honored and grateful for the incredible opportunity to collaborate with the Bunnell Street Art Center CSA. As a Yu’pik traditional artist, this venture represents a significant departure from my usual practice, yet I am filled with humility and immense pride at the chance to showcase my work to a wider audience. Through use of fish skin, fur skins, and beads, I pour my heart and soul into each creation, bridging the gap between ancient traditions and contemporary artistry. With gratitude, I embark on this journey, eager to share the rich tapestry of my culture with the world.

Rooted in the rich legacy of my ancestors, I am privileged to carry forward the time-honored traditions of crafting bestowed upon me by my grandmother, aunts, and mother. From crocheting to grass basket weaving, fur skin sewing to intricate beadwork, each art form holds a unique heritage, intricately woven with the essence of cultural wisdom. Learning and observation have become my compass, guiding me to mimic and refine learned behaviors. I cherish the traditional traits ingrained in me, finding solace and inspiration in the wild beauty of our Bristol Bay region. In my creations, nothing is wasted; each piece is a homage to the land and the enduring spirit of our people. Using fish skin promotes  cultural heritage and responsible stewardship of our natural resources.

Sarahlily Stein: Natural watercolor palette

My submission for the CSA is a watercolor palette made from plants and minerals, such as burnt sienna from the mudstones on Bishop’s Beach. It is an interactive art piece–the recipient is encouraged to experiment and paint. I hope it will get you thinking about the colors all around you. Which colors in your life exist harmoniously in the environment, and which are harmful? Art supplies don’t need to come from a factory, wrapped in plastic. We can create them ourselves with the gifts from our beaches, forests, and compost piles.

When I first moved to Homer over six years ago, it was a rainy autumn, and the hills burned crimson with fireweed leaves. Since those chilly crimson days, I’ve begun learning what it means for a landscape to be colorful. A few years ago, I began making paints from the plants I interacted with in my daily life: peonies, spruce cones, coffee, and rowan berries. As a pigment forager, I am constantly experimenting, rubbing flower petals or slime mold on my sketchbook pages to see how their colors turn out. I hope that my watercolor palette encourages you to do the same.

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