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JERRY LAKTONEN - August 2001

The Highlight of the Month program at The Indian Craft Shop focuses on a particular craft area, region or artist family/group. Our aim is to illustrate the diversity of tribal groups and the wide variety of artistic expressions and traditions in the country today.

Jerry Laktonen

Born in Kodiak, Alaska, Jerry grew up helping his father and uncles make, repair and rebuild homes and boats. He felt natural around the wood, and had no idea that he was learning skills that later would be put to such good use. Today, Jerry's work can be found in homes, museums, business places, aboard a ferry and even in a sixth grade text book. He has won ribbons at every Indian Market in Santa Fe since 1997, including Best of Division in 2000.

Jerry has combined his talent with painstaking research to produce stunning masks and ceremonial paddles. He turns to books and museums to discover more about his Alutiiq heritage. Thus inspired, he then creates his own versions of what he has found. Using traditional motifs, he adds personal touches, like fiber optic wire on a "Here Comes the Sun" raven mask. His larger masks are fashioned after traditional masks, such as his rain mask with acrylic raindrops on the face, or "Al^aiak" with its headdress of paddle blades.

                                                              ©The Indian Craft Shop 2001