Kwä̀nńthàt: Great Distance

Monday, June 27 (opening) at 5 p.m. until 6 p.m.

Wednesday, June 29 at 10 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre
1171 Front Street
Whitehorse, YK

The show will run from June 27 until September 16, 2022


We welcome you to explore the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre’s summer exhibition Kwä̀nńthàt: Great Distance. This is the first time that all three Yukon First Nations Art Periods will be on display together. We are grateful for the support of our funders, and the involvement of many organizations and individuals who have made this show come to life. We contracted curator Dr. Ukjese van Kampen and through his efforts we were able to obtain many historical items, some as far away as Toronto, Ontario and Fairbanks, Alaska. We are honoured to welcome many of these pieces home to their traditional territories. We hope you enjoy this important exhibition and get the chance experience our historical and present art forms.

Shayna Hammer, Hannah Tolman & Kailen Gingell

Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre

Athapaskan Hide Dress. University of Alaska Fairbanks, Museum of the North

When Shayna Hammer from the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre invited me to curate this exhibition for the Arctic Arts Summit I saw it as an opportunity to showcase the long but almost unknown history of Yukon First Nations Art. The early art was highly influenced by the environment and covered a wide area over a very long time and thus the exhibition title: Kwä̀nńthàt: Great Distance came into being. For this exhibition, we are lucky to borrow artifacts from many museums and artists from Canada to Alaska. I would like to thank the following cultural institutions and artists who all contributed to the creation of this exhibit: The Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto; University of Alaska Fairbanks Museum of the North; The Dawson City Museum; the Museum of Natural History in Burwash Landing; the MacBride Museum in Whitehorse; the Da Ku Cultural Centre in Haines Junction; the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre; The Council of Yukon First Nations Collection; the personal collection of Bob Charlie, Shirley Adamson and Marion Telep. And the artists who have work in this show: Jackie Olson, Gwich’in from Dawson City; Teresa Vander Meer-Chasse, Upper Tanana from Beaver Creek; Dennis Shorty, Kaska from Ross River; Keith Wolfe-Smarch, Tlingit from Carcross, Mark Preston, Tlingit from Whitehorse and  Kaylyn Jasmine Baker, a Northern Tutchone and Tlingit artist from Whitehorse.

Come visit Kwä̀nńthàt: Great Distance– an Exhibition of Yukon First Nations Arts Through Time.  Situated at the Kwalin Dün Cultural Centre. Situated on the banks of the Chu Nínkwän (Yukon River), the Cultural Centre is a place where we celebrate the heritage and contemporary way of life of the Kwanlin Dün First Nation.  

The show will run from June 27 until September 16, 2022

As our ancestors did for thousands of years, we welcome visitors from near and afar to gather in our cultural home to share stories and experiences.