Sarah Bishop finishes up her installation by placing glass fish in a copper wire nest. (Emily Files)

Sarah Bishop finishes up her installation by placing glass fish in a copper wire nest. (Emily Files)

The Alaska Arts Confluence’s Fort Seward sculpture garden has inspired the imaginations of Haines artists involved in the endeavor.

For Sarah Bishop, it’s conjured up thoughts about the past and the people who used to live here generations ago.

“We were asked to think about the barracks and the history of it. And I started to think about all the people that were here and how quickly we don’t know much about the past generations.”

Bishop says people often know a little about their grandparents, maybe even their great-grandparents, but beyond that, knowledge tends to fade.

“I just think it’s interesting that there were all these people here. And I wonder about the families these people came from and their dreams and aspirations and hobbies and how all of that dissipates so quickly.”

She created dozens of cast glass fish to represent those mysterious lives.

Cast glass fish rest inside a wire nest. (Emily Files)

Cast glass fish rest inside a wire nest. (Emily Files)

“They symbolize all of the people that have been in the community and have passed through the community.”

She chose clear glass to evoke ‘a sense of the ephemeral, or the spirit, or the soul.’ To conjure up feelings of past.

Then, one by one, she placed the fish in a metal nest representing the community.

“It’s cradling and holding containing all of the fish inside it and protecting them from the outside world. But it’s also a cage of sorts and trapping them in.”

The piece is titled ‘Generations of Dreamers.’

“[There were] generations of people here who had there lives and their hopes and their dreams and their own histories which we know very little about but at some point they lived here and they contributed. And I imagine there’s still some trickle-down of that effect.”

The outdoor art project involves more than a dozen local artists. It is funded by a grant from ArtPlace America Foundation.
More artist profiles:

Kerry Cohen with her completed ceramic installation. (Emily Files)

Kerry Cohen

Adrian Revenaugh with her in-progress installation. (Emily Files)

Adrian Revenaugh

Jim Heaton carving the backs of the welcome figure panels. (Emily Files)

Jim Heaton

Megan Morehouse with her mosaic for the Fort Seward Outdoor Art Project. (Emily Files)

Megan Morehouse

John Svenson with his in-progress mosaic. (Emily Files)

John Svenson

John Hagen with a print of his photograph that will be blown up and displayed at Port Chilkoot dock. (Emily Files)

John Hagen

Katie Craney painting on a rusted boiler door on the Fort Seward barracks ruins. (Emily Files)

Katie Craney

Dave Pahl and 'The Tank with the Crank.' (Jillian Rogers)

Dave Pahl

Andrea Nelson is using scrap metal salvaged from the barracks and installing it on the wall to her right. (Emily Files)

Andrea Nelson

Jeff Moskowitz uses Adobe Illustrator to digitally recreate a map from 1905. (Emily Files)

Jeff Moskowitz

Gene Kennedy welds re-bar into the shape of a dog. (Emily Files)

Gene Kennedy

Debi Knight Kennedy holds pieces of her found object sculpture.

Debi Knight Kennedy

Donna Catotti painting Tlingit regalia for the Fort Seward art project.

Donna Catotti