Bainbridge Island Museum of Art Announces Larry "Ulaaq" Ahvakana: Land/Water

Bainbridge Island Museum of Art announces Larry "Ulaaq" Ahvakana: Land/Water from October 11, 2014 - February 22, 2015 at the Jon and Lillian Lovelace Gallery and Beacon Gallery.

The new art museum, Bainbridge Island Museum of Art (or BIMA – pronounced BEE MA) presents its sixth rotation of exhibitions since it opened in June 2013.  BIMA presents exhibitions that are drawn from the diverse spectrum of art and craft produced in the Puget Sound region.

Larry Ahvakana was raised in Barrow and Anchorage, Alaska. He settled in Suquamish, Washington and has been a professional artist for over thirty years. Ahvakana is best known for his Inuit or Inupiaq figures and animals. “All my life, I was surrounded by my culture and my people, the Inupiaq of northern Alaska. The dances and songs of the Inupiaq tradition are our oral history — the emotional interpretation of our respect for and involvement with the environment of the North Slope of Alaska … My work incorporates many media and materials and a sense of my cultural design. The interpretation is very personal. I hope the conceptual format gives viewers an idea of the Inupiaq tradition."

This survey exhibition draws from thirty years of work and includes artworks in stone and wood carving, printmaking, fused glass, and jewelry art. These artistic creations are complemented by photographs, the artist’s ephemera, and other sources of inspiration. Ahvakana is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, RI; the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico; and Cooper Union School of Art in New York City. His artistic and professional journey includes being a student, artist-in-residence, art center coordinator, sculpture instructor, board member, and art selection committee member. 

All my life, I was surrounded by my culture and my people, the Inupiaq of northern Alaska. My work incorporates many media and materials and a sense of my cultural design. The interpretation is very personal.

Larry Ahvakana


Ahvakana’s exhibition history is extensive, including the Anchorage Museum of History and Art, Heard Museum (Phoenix), Institute of American Indian Art (Santa Fe), Quintana Gallery (Portland), Images of the North Gallery (San Francisco), Seattle Art Museum (Documents Northwest), and Sacred Circle Gallery of American Indian Art (Seattle). His work is included in numerous museum, corporate, and private collections including institute of American Indian Arts Museum (Santa Fe), Anchorage Historical and Fine Arts Museum, Alaska State Museum, Washington State Arts Commission, Portland Art Museum, Burke Museum (Seattle) and the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation (Barrow).

Ahvakana is represented by several art galleries including Boreal Traditions (Anchorage), Alaska Native Arts Foundation Gallery (Anchorage), and Quintana Galleries (Portland).  He is featured locally at Stonington Gallery (Seattle) and Bainbridge Arts & Crafts.

This exhibition is the second of four exhibitions in the Ames Family Foundation Cultural Diversity Series at BIMA. Two other solo exhibitions in the series include Romson Regarde Bustillo, titled Dugay na, summer 2014, and Barbara Earl Thomas, fall 2015. BIMA is also planning a group show of emerging artists whose work is inspired by their cultural heritage and life experiences.

About Bainbridge Island Museum of Art:

Bainbridge Island Museum of Art opened to the public on June 14, 2013, and has since welcomed more than 100,000 visitors ranging from the region and all over the world. Designed by architect Matthew Coates, Principal of Coates Design Architects, the 20,000 square foot art museum is targeted for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold status. The art museum is a collecting museum with a focus on artists and collections from the Kitsap and Olympic Peninsulas, as well as the broader Puget Sound region.  Located near the Seattle/Bainbridge Island ferry terminal at the corner of Highway 305 and Winslow Way. Admission to the art museum is free thanks to sponsors and members. The exhibitions rotate three times per year (approx. 12 shows per year). Our offerings include:  gallery tours, artist talks, panel discussions, films, print and digital publications and hands-on art activities are featured. Our 95-seat auditorium hosts artist lectures, films, classical films, poetry and theatrical readings, musical performances, and community meetings. 

Physical Address: 550 Winslow Way East 

Website:  | Office phone:  206.842.4451 I Toll Free: 855.613.1342

Media Contact:
Renate Raymond
Direct: 206.451.4002
Cell: 206.992.8744


Categories: Arts and Entertainment, Vacations and Travel

Tags: art, bainbridge, diversity, museum, native american, santa fe, seattle, suquamish

Additional Images

About Bainbridge Island Museum of Art

View Website or Newsroom

A contemporary art museum in Kitsap County on Bainbridge Island

Renate Raymond
Marketing Director , Bainbridge Island Museum of Art
Bainbridge Island Museum of Art
550 Winslow Way E
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110