Homer artist holds residency in January

Homer artist Mandy Bernard is the January artist in residence at Bunnell Street Arts Center.

Bernard’s textile work illustrates elements of Alaska’s wild landscape that are repeated through pattern and silkscreen. For January, she will create a large-scale pattern installation comprised of organic elements personally and communally collected from the field. This installation will explore the intersection of the natural environment and a strong personal connection to place. For more information, visit

Only one show scheduled for this week's First Friday

With many galleries closing or on hiatus for January, one only gallery this month, Ptarmigan Arts, holds a First Friday show. Ptarmigan continues its December show of works by Sebastian Troy Pierre, a Homer artist who moved last year to Alaska from Florida. Fireweed Arts closes Saturday until Feb. 7. The Homer Council on the Arts has been closed for the holidays and reopens on Jan. 16. Bunnell Street Arts Center is open but won't have a First Friday show as artist-in-residence Mandy Bernard prepares for her residency.


Just in time for Kenai Peninsula history conference, films from 1974 event found

Volunteers planning the 2017 Kenai Peninsula local history conference got a wonderful surprise in December. Long-lost films of a 1974 Kenai history conference have been found, salvaged and digitized. 

The recovery culminated a string of unlikely events, with the credit going to modern technology and the skilled staff at the Alaska State Library Historical Collections in Juneau.

Lance Petersen to receive awards for arts, humanities

Former Pier One Theatre director Lance Petersen has received the Governor’s Awards for the Arts and Humanities for individual artist.

The Alaska Humanities Forum and the Alaska State Council on the Arts announced the recipients earlier this month.

The Governor’s Awards for the Arts and Humanities is an annual partnership between the Alaska Humanities Forum, the Alaska State Council on the Arts (ASCA), the Alaska Arts and Culture Foundation, and the Office of the Governor to recognize and honor noteworthy contributions to the arts and humanities in Alaska.

Homer Kilcher clan joins Jewel for holiday special

Homer will get a Christmas morning treat when CBS broadcasts a holiday special with the Kilcher family. “Holiday Homecoming with Jewel” features Homer’s famous musical star, Jewel Kilcher, her aunt Mossy Kilcher, and some of the stars of the Discovery Channel reality TV show, “Alaska: The Last Frontier” — Jewel’s dad Atz Kilcher, Bonnie Dupree, Eve and Eivin Kilcher, and Nikos Kilcher. The special airs locally at 9 a.m. Dec. 25 on KTVA Channel 11. The show features singing with Jewel, Atz Kilcher, Dupree, Mossy Kilcher and Jewel’s 5-year-old son, Kase.

Diaries inspire artists in new Pratt exhibit

Among cultural institutions in Homer, the Pratt Museum has pioneered a unique spot. As a museum of natural history, history, culture and art, its exhibits often connect those aspects of the Pratt’s collections. “Inspired by Diaries,” on exhibit through Dec. 29, asked artists to create works in contemplation of diaries and journals in the museum’s collection or those of the artists. The show also bridges literary heritage and visual art.

Fish and Fire: Ninilchik resident writes stories of his life

Ninilchik resident Mike Chihuly has lived enough lives to write several books since moving to Alaska more than 60 years ago. Instead, he packed them all into one.

Chihuly’s book, “Alaska Fish and Fire,” was published in August and released in October. It catalogs Chihuly’s life experiences from growing up in Alaska and working on the state Board of Fisheries to his time spent on the Agulowak River and working as the chief of Ninilchik Emergency Services.

“I probably should have written two or three books,” he said of the broad range of topics covered in the memoir.

Arts in brief

Peyton does watercolor demo Saturday at Fireweed Gallery

Watercolor artist Jan Peyton does a demonstration from 2-4:30 p.m. Saturday at Fireweed Gallery. She will show techniques like wet-on-wet painting and how to add pigment to wet areas to create a translucent effect. The demonstration is free.

Peyton also displays her work at Fireweed Gallery.


Saulitis ‘Becoming Earth’ book makes PEN Literary Award list

The Arts in brief

Big Read starts next month

The Friends of the Homer Public Library presents its third Homer Big Read. The focus of the community read will be Thornton Wilder’s books “The Bridge of San Luis Rey” and “Our Town.” Together the community will examine the themes of the books, including how communities and individuals make sense of tragedy, what it means to make a life in a small town, how to seize the day, and the continued importance of reading and literature in a well-examined life.

28th annual Homer Nutcracker Ballet continues the magic

Homer might be as cold as Moscow this winter, but when it comes to the annual production of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker, citizens, we’re not talking the Bolshoi Ballet. At the end of the road, and now in its 28th year, the Cosmic Hamlet’s production can be a bit, well, unusual. That’s part of the charm that makes Homer Nutcracker Productions’ version not a cookie-cutter Nutcracker.

Consider some of the ways the Nutcracker gets done Homer style:

First Friday events

All Hopped Up Espresso

280 W. Pioneer Ave.

Homer Connections K-12 Student Art by various artists

3-4 p.m., First Friday Opening Reception

Homer Connections students who are taking an art course this semester — painting, drawing, ceramics, photography, printmaking or digital art — share their work at the Homer Connections First Friday K-12 Art Show. Appetizers, coffee and hot cocoa will be provided.


Art Shop Gallery

202 W. Pioneer Ave.

Customer Appreciation Night

Arts in brief

Nutcracker Faire runs this weekend

The Homer Council on the Arts annual Nutcracker Faire runs 11 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday in the Homer High School Commons and gym. The faire features artists and crafters selling local, handmade gifts, food, live music and from 1-3 p.m. both days, a visit from Santa Claus. The Nutcracker Ballet also opens at 3 p.m. Saturday in the Mariner Theatre.


Corcoran School to host Bunnell’s

‘Decolonizing Alaska’ exhibit

Library Journal gives Homer library highest ranking — 2016 Star Library

The Homer Public Library is a 2016 Star Library in the annual ranking of U.S. public libraries by Library Journal. In its index of Public Library Service, Homer Public Library is one of only 260 libraries to receive the highest rankings from the prestigious publication for the U.S. library community. This is the fifth time HPL has been named a Star Library in the nine-year history of the index.

Fundraiser challenge starts to name Storyknife house after Saulitis

Poet Peggy Shumaker and her husband Joe Usibelli announced they would like to name the Storyknife main house after poet, writer and teacher Eva Saulitis. The cost of the house is $250,000, and Shumaker and Usibelli will match every dollar donated two-to-one.

Saulitis died in 2016 of breast cancer. A teacher at Kachemak Bay Campus and the Kachemak Bay Writers Conference, Saulitis wrote several books of poetry, a memoir, “Into Great Silence,” and a series of essays about dying, “Becoming Earth.”

Kilcher cookbook depicts delicious life

“Homestead Kitchen” was born out of the same kind of connection that started the Kilcher family’s reality television show — a Facebook message to Eivin Kilcher.

“Alaska: The Last Frontier,” the Discovery channel show that made the Kilchers a family name known in households across the United States, had been on for about three years when a literary agent reached out to Eivin and asked if there was interest in writing a book. Coincidentally, he and his wife Eve had tossed the idea around of writing a cookbook around before, so they pitched it.


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