Indigenous artists say the disqualification raises questions of who gets to be heard in Juneau’s art community, and who doesn’t.
The achievement represents a lifetime of creative excellence and outstanding contribution to Alaska’s arts and culture.
U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith is visiting Juneau as part of a national tour to rural communities in Alaska, South Dakota, Maine and Louisiana.
Their insurance adjuster noted that homeowner Ernestine Hayes’ clan, the Kaagwaantaan, are known as the Burnt House People.
Petersburg High School student Elisa Larson took first place and will advance to the National Finals in April, held in Washington, D.C. Jania Tumey of West Anchorage High School was runner up.
“We are surrounded tonight by resolute, substantial brilliant flames of the arts, humanities, social justice, community service and the human caring,” said Alaska state writer laureate Ernestine Hayes.
The Alaska State Council on the Arts facilitates the selection of the Writer Laureate. The Governor’s Awards for the Arts and Humanities can be seen on 360 North beginning at 8 p.m.
The Juneau author and memoirist is perhaps best known for writing “Blonde Indian.”
The Juneau Public Library recently celebrated the addition of 30 local oral history interviews to the its permanent collection and archive.
“Some of our people got scared of the daylight, ran into the forest. Some of our people hid behind the trees.”