Jerry Smetzer stand next to his paintings that inspired his book “Cassiopeia’s Quest” at the Public Market in the Alaska State Museum building on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Jerry Smetzer stand next to his paintings that inspired his book “Cassiopeia’s Quest” at the Public Market in the Alaska State Museum building on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

First-ever Artists and Authors Market a success

Public Market is a valuable fundraiser for nonprofits and organizations

Four Juneau venues were bustling marketplaces Friday afternoon.

Centennial Hall, Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall, Alaska State Library, Archives and Museum and Juneau Arts & Culture Center were filled with buyers and sellers during the opening hours of Public Market, Juneau’s annual holiday market.

This was the first year the state museum has been the site of an Artists and Authors Market held in collaboration with Public Market.

“There’s some amazing artists here,” said Don Morgan, who was selling his own wooden wares in the atrium of the Father Andrew P. Kashevaroff Building.

Morgan, who used to own a gallery on Ferry Way, said he wasn’t sure what to expect with the inaugural event, but he was pleased with the steady flow of people coming into the market within the first 30 minutes of opening.

Morgan said he had received interest in a large piece he expected to sell for about $700, and he expected it to sell before the artists market’s closing at 5 p.m. Saturday.

“I don’t think it will last two days,” Morgan said.

He said it’s rare that he has an opportunity to sell some of his more expensive works.

Lue Isaac, who was selling art and doing sketches, and Jerry Smetzer, local author and artist, each said they were happy with the exposure for their work.

Smetzer was selling multiple editions of his book “Cassiopeia’s Quest,” a collection of 10 short works of historic fiction.

“We’re pretty happy with the venue,” Smetzer said.

Isaac said she was encouraged by the foot traffic between the various venues.

“Artists aren’t good at marketing,” Isaac said. “We’ve got to jump on it when it’s easy.”

Lisa Golisek-Nankerv, division operations manager for Alaska State Libraries, Archives & Museums, said early feedback for the first-ever endeavor had been positive.

“I’m feeling really good about it,” Golisek-Nankerv said.

Selling goods and raising funds

Hamd Akmal was selling henna mehendi — an intricate type of body art — at the artist’s market.

The Thunder Mountain exchange student from Karachi, Pakistan, was joined by her host mom, Missy MicMillan, and the henna body art was being sold to help support the Thunder Mountain High School girls basketball team.

It was one of many efforts to support a cause or organization through the artist market or Public Market.

The Juneau-Douglas High School Art Club had a booth inside Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall staffed by club member Nikki Box, a senior, and club President Riley Stadt, a senior.

“All our funds go to help get us to Art Fest held in Haines this year, and our Folk Fest backdrop. We made one last year, and we are hoping to continue this year.”

Art work for sale included ceramics, wood burning and cards made by JDHS students or alumni, Box said.

“It’s been good, and we’ve had a lot of conversations about what we’re raising money for,” Stadt said.

Inside Centennial Hall, past a snaking line of people, Juneau Raptor Center and the American Bald Eagle Foundation of Haines shared space.

The nonprofit organizations showed off raptors and sold things to raise money. The Juneau Raptor Center side included T-shirts, hats, plush stuffed birds and more.

“This is a big fundraiser for us,” said Janet Capito, vice president for the center’s board.

Even some for-profit booths included an element of charitable support.

All four walls of Kindred Post’s booth included the words, “Social Justice” and items from the post office and store’s Social Justice Hustle line were for sale.

Ten percent of each Social Justice Hustle line item goes toward a social just cause of Kindred Post’s choosing, said Christy NaMee Eriksen, Kindred Post’s owner. This year, that’s Sealaska Heritage Institute’s art program.

“We’re really trying to use this opportunity when we see so many people in our community to promote making positive change,” Eriksen said.


• Contact arts and culture reporter Ben Hohenstatt at (907)523-2243 or bhohenstatt@juneauempire.com.


Tayt Whiteley, 8, and his sister, Delilah, 5, admire the stained glass snowflakes by Connie Nesgoda at the Public Market in Centennial Hall on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Tayt Whiteley, 8, and his sister, Delilah, 5, admire the stained glass snowflakes by Connie Nesgoda at the Public Market in Centennial Hall on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Eurasian eagle-owl from the American Bald Eagle Foundation of Haines on display at the Public Market in Centennial Hall on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Eurasian eagle-owl from the American Bald Eagle Foundation of Haines on display at the Public Market in Centennial Hall on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

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