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Decolonizing Alaska, Now on Tour

Decolonizing Alaska has been on tour since August of 2016.

If you’ve seen the exhibit, please take a short 3-minute evaluation survey.

After nearly three years of traveling, the exhibit Decolonizing Alaskawhich opened in Homer in August, 2016,  ends its tour in Anchorage in February, 2019.
Here’s the final Decolonizing Alaska tour calendar:
Homer: 8/5 – 8/31/16, Bunnell Street Arts Center
Valdez:  9/16 – 10/23/16, Valdez Historical and Fine Arts Museum
Washington DC:  2/3 – 3/18/17, Corcoran School of Arts and Design at George Washington University
Juneau:  5/5 – 10/14/17, Alaska State Museum
Ketchikan:  11/4 – 12/22/17, Ketchikan Arts and Humanities Council
Fairbanks:  2/10/18-9/30/18, The UA Museum of the North
Petersburg: 11/2-30/18, Petersburg Library and Clausen Memorial Museum
New locations for the exhibit tour have opened up along the way. What I’ve learned from this project centers on adaptation and resilience. The most recent development in Anchorage follows the cancellation of a long-planned final stop at the Center for Contemporary Art + Culture. Its unfortunate that this important institution in Portland lost space downtown.  Nevertheless, the fact that so many of Alaska’s communities elected to participate can only be understood as a movement to decolonize Alaska.
The project has shaped Bunnell Street Arts Center. In our leadership and programs, from exhibits to performances, residencies and Artist in Schools, we are changed. Bunnell’s strategic plan now places equity and inclusion alongside excellence at the top of our goals. I am convinced that true decolonization begins in our homes and schools, in how we tell our stories, in how we meet each other. Central to this work, last year Bunnell co-commissioned ALAXSXA | ALASKAa theatrical collage of striking contemporary and historical encounters between Indigenous Alaska Native communities and newcomers to the Great Land. As this play tours Alaska in 2018, engaging a host of new partners and as it is shared in Anchorage and Nanwalek, in Homer and shared again at Elders and Youth* prior to Alaska Federation of Natives in Anchorage, the work continues!
Asia Freeman
Artistic Director
Bunnell Street Arts Center
Decolonizing Alaska is made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, The CIRI Foundation, Rasmuson Foundation, The Harper Arts Touring Fund administered by Alaska State Council on the Arts, Pratt Museum, Leonard Hyde, Penny Pederson, Valdez Museum and Historical Archive, George Washington University, Anchorage Museum, Alutiiq Museum and Archeological Repository, Alaska State Museum, Ketchikan Arts and Humanities Council, UA Museum of the North, Petersburg Library and Clausen Memorial Museum and University of Alaska Anchorage. 
I would also like to recognize our ALAXSXA/ALASKA partners, Ping Chong + Company, National Performance Network, Juneau Arts and Humanities Council, University of Alaska Anchorage, La Mama Experimental Theater, New England Foundation for the Arts, Cook Inlet Housing Authority, The CIRI Foundation, Alaska State Council on the Arts, Rasmuson Foundation, Anchorage Concert Association, The Calista Corporation, Nanwalek Tribal Council, Chugachmiut, Inc, and First Alaskans

Decolonizing Alaska Artist Talk Part 1

Asia Freeman, Crystal Rose Worl, Melissa Shagnioff, Michael Conti, Kesler Woodward, Michael Walsh and Annette Bellamy:

Decolonizing Alaska Artist Talk Part 2:

Rebecca Lyon, Getchen Sagan, Rika Mouw, Ben Schleifman, Joel Isaak, Sonya Kelliher Combs, Sheila Wyne, and Sheryl Maree Reily:


Curator’s Statement





Decolonizing Alaska Catalog PDF




Decolonizing Study Guide Img

Decolonizing Alaska Study Guide PDF





MEDIA hosted by Robert Hannon with curator Asia Freeman and artist Joel Isaac March 2018


The Juneau Empire

“’Decolonizing Alaska’ is inspired by the idea that artists should challenge expectations of how Native art should look…”

“…artwork ranging from fishskin screens, weavings, masks and even remnants of moose antler…”

Washington Diplomat

“‘Decolonizing Alaska’ Digs Deeper Than Eskimos and Igloos…”

Washington Post

“A multimedia exhibition of works by a collaboration of 30 native and nonnative Alaska artists…”

“…includes reflections on personal and cultural identity, as well as on political and environmental issues.”

Indian Country Media Network

“…‘Decolonizing Alaska’ questions the modern ideals of today’s Native people…”

“Alaska Natives have struggled for centuries against the onslaught of colonization that seized their ancestral homeland to plunder its wealth of natural resources while seeking to stamp out indigenous traditions…”

George Washington University:

“…contemporary artists exploring and responding to Alaska’s history of colonization and its emerging influence on sustainability, both environmental and cultural.”

“…and inspire conversation around self-definition and the power to express ideas about identity separate from those that permeate popular culture.”

Alaska Public Media

“An innovative new exhibit at Bunnell Street Arts Center has turned a spotlight on Alaska’s long history of colonization…”

Valdez Museum

“…works by established Alaskan artists responding to the theme of the colonization of Alaska: the commodification and stereotyping of Alaskan cultures and iconography.”

KBBI Public Radio (audio)

“KBBI News Director Daysha Eaton talks with Asia Freeman, the Artistic/Executive Director at Bunnell Street Arts Center and the curator for Decolonizing Alaska…”

Alaska Dispatch

“First Friday: Decolonizing Alaska Aug 5-31st…”

Homer News

“Flex students challengedby ‘Decolonizing’ exhibit…”

KTOO Public Media

“The exhibition tells a multitude of stories from many perspectives…”

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