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Past recorded conversations from “Inspiration in Isolation,” Alaska artists exploring about how we’re weathering isolation and productive creativity during COVID-19. You can also listen in on our Podcast.


Catie Bursch, Amber Webb & Thorey Munro

May 28, 2020, featured Catie Bursch, Amber Webb and Thorey Munro. These artists have all lived and worked along Bristol Bay for many years.

Catie Bursch intertwines art, science and commercial fishing on a daily basis. She has fished in Bristol Bay for the past 30 years where she and Tom raised their two girls in the summer. She just finished a fellowship with Alaska Salmon Fellows exploring salmon sustainability, equitability and the Alaska Salmon/People system.

Amber Webb is an artist & activist from Dillingham, Alaska of Yup’ik and Unangan heritage. She received a Rasmuson Individual Artist Award and a Project Award. Amber explores pictorial Yup’ik storytelling to tell contemporary stories of oppression and resilience.

Thorey Munro spends her winters in Homer, Alaska and her summers salmon fishing on the Egegik River in Bristol Bay. She recently completed a masters degree in architecture and currently has an exhibit in the Bunnell Street Arts Center.

Ella Parks, Drew Wimmerstedt & Asa Panarelli

May 21, 2020, featured Homer Youth guests: Ella Parks, Drew Wimmerstedt and Asa Panarelli

Asa Panarelli is a locally grown actor and musician. A recent graduate of Homer High, he looks forward to delving deeper into all the art and creativity that Homer has to offer.

Ella Parks is a singer-songwriter who was born and raised in Homer. She currently resides in Austin, Texas where she is making new music and hopes to build a career out of it someday.

Drew Wimmerstedt is a visual artist raised in Homer’s art community. Close to finishing their Associate in the Arts at Kachemak Bay Campus, Drew hopes to continue contributing to Homer’s healthy obsession with art.

Francesca DuBrock & Michael Walsh

May 14, 2020, featured Francesca DuBrock and Michael Walsh. Francesca DuBrock is Chief Curator at the Anchorage Museum. She is passionate about creative practice as a method of understanding and questioning the world, often collaborating with artists and community members to develop projects highlighting cultural diversity in the North. Before returning home to Alaska, Francesca worked as an artist, educator, archivist, translator, server and (briefly) in wood conservation in Maine, California, and Mexico. Michael Walsh is assistant curator/archivist for the Ruben/Benston Film Collection at the Walker Arts Center. A teacher and studio artist, Michael Walsh has worked in moving image art since the early 1990s. He has curated programs for Korean galleries, San Francisco museums and microcinemas, Milwaukee’s urban meadows and shipyards, Alaskan airplane hangars, bunkers, and mountain tops.

Amy Meissner & Carla Cope

May 7, 2020, featured Alaska artists Amy Meissner and Carla Cope. Amy Meissner combines traditional handwork, found objects and abandoned textiles to reference the literal, physical and emotional work of women. She has shown internationally with textile work in the permanent collections of the Anchorage Museum, the Contemporary Art Bank of Alaska and the Alaska Humanities Forum as well as various private collections. Her background is in clothing design, illustration and creative writing, and she is currently an MA Candidate in Critical Craft Studies at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. Amy lives in Anchorage. Carla Cope, from Homer, graduated with a BFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft in 2003 and lived and painted in Oregon, Wisconsin and California before moving back to Homer in 2010. Carla “finds fresh inspiration in this beautiful and quirky place. I’m driven by color and pattern. My imagery is derived from personal narrative and the messy, lyrical, tragic and profound experience of being an Alaskan woman, an artist, and a mother.”

Bruce Farnsworth & Sheila Wyne

April 30, 2020, featured visual artists Bruce Farnsworth and Sheila Wyne. Bruce Farnsworth is an Anchorage based writer, artist and community organizer. He founded and directed MTS Gallery in Anchorage and Light Brigade, a multimedia collaboration of artists who stage site specific art interventions in the built and natural environment. He is Co-Lead of the Pan-Arctic 8Boxes Project. Farnsworth was the recipient of the first ever “President’s Award” from the Rasmuson Foundation, an award created by the foundation’s President and CEO to honor his work in neighborhood revitalization through the arts. Sheila Wyne is a visual artist based in Anchorage. Her studio work has been shown across the state, the Lower 48 and overseas. Her work is in permanent collections of several Alaska museums, and she has designed over 20 public artworks. Wyne has worked as a set designer with theatre companies in Alaska and the Northwest and she is core Member of The Light Brigade. Wyne has been awarded a national NEA/TCG Fellowship in set design, a Rasmuson Artist Fellowship and grants from Alaska State Council on the Arts, the NASE Development Program, the Andy Warhol and Rockefeller Foundations as well as the Governor’s Award for Individual Artist.

Melissa Shaginoff & Berith Stennabb

April 23, 2020 featured artists Melissa Shaginoff and Berith Stennabb. Melissa Shaginoff is an artist and curator. She received her Bachelors of Fine Arts from the Institute of American Indian Arts and Alaska Native Cultures in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She is the curator of art for Alaska Pacific University. Melissa Shaginoff is of Athabascan and Paiute descent. Through various mediums and culturally informed intentions, her work addresses systemic issues preventing sustainability, agency and equity. Whether through a series of paintings, scraping a moosehide in her village, or a holding workshop on Land Acknowledgement, every aspect of Shaginoff’s work centers Indigenous values and ways of being. more. Berith Stennabb has a Master of fine Arts, specialization in Textile. Her work often includes motion, sound and visual expressions and interaction with people from all walks of life. She creates interactive fiber installations featuring crochet and mixed media. Berith’s interactions with people are subtle. She is a listener more than a leader but in her gentle approach she manages to inspire others to open up and personalize her art-making experiences. more.

Ryan Conarro & David Pettibone

April 16, 2020 features David Pettibone and Ryan Conarro. David Pettibone is a figurative painter. He makes paintings of people and places which seek to convey the visceral emotions that arise from our convoluted relationship with the natural world. He received his BFA from the the Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from the New York Academy of Art. David has taught art through various institutions including Brooklyn College, Marymount Manhattan College and the University of Alaska. He resides in Homer. Ryan Conarro makes story-centered performance and sound works that aim to cultivate relationship and community. He received a Rasmuson Individual Artist Award, 3 Alaska Broadcasters Association Goldie Awards, and an NBC OUT Queer Performer Spotlight. Originally from north Georgia, these days Ryan has one foot in Alaska and the other in New York.

Amber Webb & Emily Johnson

April 9, 2020 features Amber Webb and Emily Johnson.  Amber Webb is an artist and activist from Dillingham, Alaska of Yup’ik and Unangax̂ heritage. She received a Rasmuson Individual Artist Award and a Project Award. Amber explores pictorial Yup’ik storytelling to tell contemporary stories of oppression and resilience. Emily Johnson is an artist who makes body-based work. A Bessie Award-winning choreographer and a 2015 Guggenheim fellow in choreography, she is based in New York. Raised in Soldotna, Alaska, she is of Yup’ik descent.

Annette Bellamy & Molly Lou Freeman

On April 2, 2020, visual artist Annette Bellamy (Halibut Cove, Alaska) and writer Molly Lou Freeman (raised in Homer, Alaska) discussed the impacts of the virus and strategies for creative productivity. Molly Lou Freeman writes, translates and teaches in France and has just completed her first novel. With over 45 publications in American journals, her awards include an Academy of American Poets prize and grants from the French National Literary Endowment. Annette Bellamy is a sculptor inspired by many years of commercial fishing. Food gathering and the tools of her labor in fishing are significant themes in her work. Annette’s work has been exhibited nationally and in the art collections of the Anchorage Museum, Alaska State Museum, Pratt Museum, and the Fuller Craft Museum.

Argent Kvasnikoff & Eowyn Ivey

March 26, 2020, featured visual artist Argent Kvasnikoff (Dena’ina/Alutiiq, from the Ninilchik tribe) and Alaska author Eowyn Ivey (Palmer, Alaska). They discussed impacts of the virus and strategies for creative productivity. Argent Kvasnikoff is a sculptor and painter with a background in anthropology. He has exhibited at the Pratt Museum, Bunnell Street Arts Center and Homer Public Library. Eowyn Ivey is the author of The Snow Child and To the Bright Edge of the World, and is at work on her third novel, The Bear Hunter. She was raised in Alaska and continues to live there with her husband and two daughters.

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