In September, the Seward Arts Council received a $1,000 mini-grant for supplies for its “Seward’s Native Roots” 2022 mural project. The mural is a collaboration with the Qutekcak Native Tribe and Seward Mural Society and has been in the works for almost ten years.
“Some of the murals in Seward tell of its founding, the importance of location as a railroad port, or commercial fishing as an industry. But up to now, the Alaska Native story has not been illustrated or noted fully. This mural starts to do that,” says Jennifer Headke, Founding Member of SMS.
The “Seward’s Native Roots” mural tells the unique story of Qutekcak, the links with Jesse Lee Home, homesteader Mary Lowell, and the Native history of the Resurrection Bay area. Qutekcak elders and local artists Susan Swiderski and Melanie Smith designed and envisioned the mural.
Over the last weekend of September, community members gathered at Temple Studios in downtown Seward to help paint the mural. “We had a great turnout,” said master artist Melanie Smith. “We finished most of the painting over the weekend with volunteers and spent the following week doing touch-ups and 2nd coats.” The finished mural will be stored in Temple Studios over the winter and installed on the TelAlaska building in the Spring of 2023.
This grant was funded by the Seward Community Foundation Fund.
By Teal Hall, SCF Advisor