"Communities, Disaster & Change" is a traveling exhibition coordinated by the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive, in Valdez, Alaska. It provides a twist on the fiftieth anniversary of the Good Friday Earthquake commemoration through its connection with other communities and other disasters. The exhibit will travel around the state as well as to Oregon, and Hawaii. The full travel schedule and complete online gallery of the exhibit can be seen here.

This blog serves as a place to host a global conversation about the indomitable nature of the human spirit and communities' reactions to change, how they survive disaster and how they rebuild for the future. We hope this can be a tool for people like you, all across the world, to reach out and share your stories on survival and the will to carry on.

If you have seen the exhibit whether online or in person we want to know your reaction to the work of these twenty-eight Alaskan artists. Please join us in an ongoing conversation, and chime in with your thoughts, views and your personal stories of your community, disaster, and change.

08 October 2014

Valdez Museum Art Acquisitions


  Fire & Ice - Sara Tabbert                                                                                                                                        

Valdez, Alaska October 7, 2014 - - The Valdez Museum is grateful to the Rasmuson Foundation for the 2014 award of its annual Art Acquisition Initiative grant for the purchase of five new acquisitions of contemporary art to the collection. Two of the pieces are diptychs, making seven pieces of artwork altogether.

Each of this year’s purchases is a part of the Valdez Museum’s traveling exhibition Communities, Disaster and Change. This exhibition, displayed in Valdez during the summer of 2014, features works by 28 of Alaska’s finest artists, responding to the theme of natural disasters and their influence on the arts and communities. Communities, Disaster and Change was assembled in response to 2014’s fifty-year anniversary of the 1964 Good Friday Earthquake, and is accompanied by the publication of a full-color catalogue available for purchase through the Valdez Museum and participating institutions. The exhibit tours around the state and beyond between September 2014 and December 2015, touring consecutively to Homer; Cordova; Fairbanks; Honolulu, Hawaii; Coos Bay, Oregon; and Juneau. The purchased items will remain with the touring exhibition until the exhibit’s conclusion and return to Valdez in late December 2015.

 The five works purchased are:

  • David Mollet, Growden Memorial Park. Created by the Fairbanks owner of art gallery Well Street Art Company, this painting speaks of the theme of commemoration and renewal through its depiction of the Growden Memorial Park, in Anchorage. The park is named for James Growden, a Valdez resident who perished during the Good Friday Earthquake.
  • David Rosenthal, Tsunami & After the Earthquake. This set of two oil paintings was painted by Cordova artist David Rosenthal, best known for his atmospheric landscapes. The diptych is notable within the exhibit for being the only pieces based upon historical photographs, depicting the considerable damage done to Valdez as a result of the quake.
  • Jim Miller, Chenega Mourning. This carved mask was created by Jim Miller, an Alutiiq artist from the Native village of Port Graham. It is an homage to those who died as a result of the quake in Chenega, a Native village that was destroyed during the earthquake and rebuilt on Evans Island as Chenega Bay in the 1980s.
  • Ron Senungetuk, Extremes. Ron Senungetuk is a well-established Inupiat artist whose career spans fifty years. Extremes is an abstract painted and carved wooden panel that is a striking example of the way the artist works, drawing upon multiple traditions to make intensely personal statements. It depicts a bright northern sun rising over a disturbed sea, promising light in the wake of darkness.
  • Sara Tabbert, Fire and Ice (some say the world will end). A relief-carved diptych from Fairbanks artist Sara Tabbert, Fire and Ice portrays the dual threats of fire and ice damage and flooding, two sources of community disaster that have threatened both Fairbanks and Valdez. The theme of potential destruction by natural causes ties in strongly with the Communities, Disaster and Change theme as well as historic catastrophe that is part of Valdez’s ongoing legacy.
 Initiated in 2003, the Art Acquisition Initiative provides grants for Alaska museums to purchase current work by practicing Alaskan artists.  The initiative requires that the new acquisitions fit in with the purchasing institutions organizational mission, and they must be quality artworks produced within the last five years.  In previous years the museum was granted funding to acquire works by local artists Marilyn Leahy, Lillian Dillon, Don Kompkoff, Jerri Plaster, Sonya Selanoff, Jean Renée Sunder, Mike Webber, and Peter Lind, Jr. The Valdez Museum is pleased to present these new works as a part of the museum’s growing collection of contemporary artwork.
About the Valdez Museum:

The Valdez Museum & Historical Archive is an active place. We bring the stories of our community's history alive through our programs and activities. Please come visit us at our two locations: The Valdez Museum in the heart of downtown at 217 Egan Drive and the Remembering Old Valdez Exhibit on the waterfront at 436 S. Hazelet. 


·        Winter Hours ( January 1 – Memorial Day and Labor Day - December 31 Tuesday - Sunday:  1 - 5 pm Monday:  Closed

·        Summer Hours ( Labor Day – Memorial Day) Daily:  9am-5pm


Winter: Open by Appointment (Memorial Day – Labor Day)
Summer: 9am - 5pm
For more information please visit our website at www.valdezmuseum.org or on Facebook


Andrew Goldstein - Tel: 835 8905     Email: curator@valdezmuseum.org

Extremes - Ron Senungetuk

Growden Memorial Park - David Mollet

Chenega Mourning - Jim Miller

Tsunami - David Rosenthal

After The Quake - David Rosenthal



1 comment:

  1. Yeah, their annual Art Acquisition Initiative is truly admirable. I am glad they got award for this initiative. You know dear the gallery space for rent NYC also organizes annual art events. The art in that event is always impressive.


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