Juneau artist Jayne Dangeli is no stranger to markets but this year marked her first return in several years.
“I’ve been out at markets here and there before COVID, but this is the first time I’ve attended another once since the pandemic,” Dangeli said.
Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska hosted its Indigenous Artists & Vendors Holiday Market Friday through Sunday at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall. The market featured various vendors showcasing authentic Indigenous crafts, clothing, arts and jewelry. There was also a food court hosted by Smokehouse Catering, as well as a complimentary holiday themed photo booth.
Juneau Public Market is also returning after a hiatus from the pandemic for its 40th year on Friday through Sunday from noon to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday at Centennial Hall and the Juneau Arts and Culture Center.
Dangeli, who is of Nisga’a, Tsetsaut and Tsimshian descent, has lived and worked in Juneau for 40 years, and after raising her family and retiring she started doing artwork full time and she said the business just grew on its own.
“I’ve been doing regalia beadwork and weaving for over 30 years,” Dangeli said. The market put the call out for artists and I answered and here I am at this wonderful display that they’ve made for us. This gives me a nice place to come to sell with other artists.”
Tlingit and Haida’s business and economic development manager Jamie Cowan said that while this year’s market wasn’t the first Indigenous holiday market they’ve hosted, it is the first one they’ve been able to arrange since 2018.
“We just wanted to give our Indigenous artists a place where they could highlight their artwork, so we’re excited to be able to bring that opportunity back,” Cowan said. “A lot of the vendors are really excited because they’ve been making a lot of products but they haven’t been able to actually sell it, so everyone is just happy to be here.”
Cowan said there were some returning vendors from years past, such as Dangeli and Sugar Bear Alaskan Treasures, but this year’s market introduced a lot of new artists, as well.
One of the newer additions to this year’s lineup were Riley, 13, and Cora, 11, Soboleff. Both students at Dzantik’i Heeni Middle School, the sisters were born in Juneau and according to Riley Soboleff, while this is their first year with a booth, they’ve been attending the market their entire lives. Additionally, the girls added that while Riley has been knitting hats for a while, they’ve only started collectively making earrings this year, which they said was largely inspired by their father’s profession.
“I’ve been making hats for a while but we started making earrings just this year,” Riley Soboleff said. “Our dad goes sea otter hunting and so we’ve been using his sea otter for earrings, that’s where we sort of got the idea from.
Cora said that quite a lot of time goes into making the earrings and they’re looking forward to expanding their product line overtime, and hoping to soon be selling through Etsy online.
“We start with the beads and then depending on the type of earring, sometimes you add a hook or other times you have to go through the bead and make a loop at the top and then at the hook,” Cora Soboleff said.
Know & Go
What: Indigenous Artists & Vendors Holiday Market
When: Noon to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday
Where: Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall, 320 W. Willoughby Ave.
Know & Go
What: Juneau Public Market
When: Noon to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday
Where: Centennial Hall, 101 Egan Drive and the Juneau Arts and Culture Center, 395 Whittier St.
Admission: $8 per adult for Centennial Hall and free for JACC