The Fred Meyer Palmer Artwork by Ruth Hulbert!
We at the Valley Arts Alliance are very pleased to be involved in the selection and procurement of the artwork at the new Fred Meyer store in Palmer.
Ruth Hulbert, a fourth-generation Alaskan, was selected to provide the mural placed in the cafeteria area. Ruth was born and raised in Palmer. She has a BA in biology and painting from Western Washington University, and a certificate in science illustration from the University of Washington.
Ruth’s mural is a stylized cross-section of the Palmer area, from Hatcher Pass to the Hayflats, condensed into a single colorful patch of forest. Through the trees you can glimpse a bit of Independence Mine, a cabin, the Palmer water tower, a Colony farm, and the Alaska State Fair. The old cabin depicted is the one built by John Bugge, who homesteaded in Palmer in 1914. The new Fred Meyer store sits in what was once John Bugge’s hay field.
From native Dena’ina and Ahtna, prospectors, homesteaders, colonists, up to the most recent cheechakos, all those who have lived or traded here have left some mark on the landscape.
Look closely at Ruth’s mural and find traces of some of the languages spoken here over the years, in the names of plants and animals.
Ruth has provided us with a list of all the species included in her mural, in four different languages: the common name, the taxonomic name, the Dena’ina name, and the Ahtna name.
Ruth comments, “It's a huge pile of information, but if you want some interesting tidbits…
“—In English, we say "willow" and "willow ptarmigan," using the name of the plant to refer to the bird. In Dena'ina, ptarmigan is "delggema" and dwarf willow is "delggema duna" or "ptarmigan food" -- so they use the name of the bird to refer to the plant.
“—Club moss in Dena'ina is "d'lina kala" which means "mouse's tail," so I painted the mouse and club moss next to each other.
“—Both Dena'ina and Ahtna use similar words for the two prickliest plants. In Dena'ina, roses are "heshkegh" and devil's club is "heshkeghka'a," while in Ahtna rose is "xost'aan'" and devil's club is "xos cogh." Both sets of names translate roughly to thorn-bush and bigger thorn-bush.”
To see Ruth's list of all the species included in her mural, see our Fred Meyer Palmer Mural by Ruth Hulbert archive page.
VAA partners with Valley Performing Arts!
The Valley Performing Arts will be producing “Boeing Boeing” at the Machetanz Theatre, 251 West Swanson in Wasilla, from January 13th to January 29th, 2017.
This French farce adapted for the English-speaking stage features self-styled lothario Bernard, who has three fiancées of different nationalities, each beautiful airline hostesses with frequent “layovers”. He keeps “one up, one down and one pending” until unexpected schedule changes bring all three to Paris and Bernard’s apartment at the same time. Having to deal with each fiancé one at a time hasn’t been a problem, but how will he handle them all at once? “Awkward” doesn’t even begin to describe the situation that Bernard finds himself in. Laughs galore!.
For more info, see their website or phone the Box Office at 373-0195.
In the lobby of the Machetanz Theatre is the Valley Arts Alliance showcase that displays locally crafted original artwork by Valley Arts Alliance members.
For the next several weeks, our showcase will contain “Palmer Colony Kuspuk”, a tarp and tape original by Niki Pease, celebrating 80 years of the Palmer Colony! This piece was sponsored by Benders of Hair and the Valley Arts Alliance, and has appeared in the 2016 VAA Wearable Art & Runway Fashion Show, last summer’s celebration of the Palmer Colony anniversary, and at Valley Arts Alliance productions AK Home Companion and Ice Castles.
New displays at the Machetanz Theatre are being planned, so that we can provide VPA theatre guests with an opportunity to view our local community artists. Just another example of the Valley Arts Alliance bringing the community together through the arts!
What is "Second Saturday"?
On one day each month—the “Second Saturday” here in the Valley—we are encouraging local art galleries, restaurants, and retail businesses to join in with local and regional artists, sculptors, musicians, and food masters for a festive day of art and entertainment.
This concept has been adopted in a variety of locations throughout America, and provides a festive atmosphere for visitors to plan a day on the town and browse the many participating stores and venues. A bookstore could schedule a book signing; a coffee shop could schedule a poetry reading; a gallery could have an artist demonstrate; or a retail establishment could provide space for a musician to play. All on the same day of the month—the Second Saturday.
The Valley Arts Alliance is coordinating the "Second Saturday" project. Just email us if you are willing to participate and we will attempt to match up artists and venues. For a complete list of participating Second Saturday venues, please sign up for our newsletter. It’s that easy! Join us in supporting the arts in our community, and in helping to make our art community grow.