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Bridge Art from Local Tlingit Artist, Crystal Christopherson

by School's Out Washington | | Posted under Bridge Conference, School's Out News

About the Art and Artist, Crystal Christopherson

As we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us, how do we ensure that young people can draw upon the past to ground their cultural identities, and raise the advancement for equity to the forefront? How do we widen our lens to truly acknowledge the expertise young people hold? How can we transform the roots of our history and shift systems to uplift the cultural identities of this next generation?


This year’s theme for Bridge 2019 Conference, Looking Back, Facing Forward, explores the importance of culture and the role it plays in shaping and empowering young people and their communities. We will hear from speakers who will share their knowledge and strategies to better create systems, organizations, and programs that affirm their intersectional identities.
The artwork was created by Crystal Christopherson, an emerging Tlingit artist, born and raised in Seattle, WA. Crystal is a multi-medium artist, painter, and carver with a focus on the traditional art known as Formline. Her journey began in 2012 as a student of Tsimshian artist David A. Boxley. Throughout the years she has continued to engage in the art, language, and traditions of her people so she may preserve it with honor and respect, and pass down the knowledge and values acquired to her children and the community.

Raven Tlingit Artwork

Below is Crystal’s artwork statement:

“I found the theme for this year’s Bridge Conference ‘Looking back, facing forward’ incredibly easy for me to work with because the message behind it reigns true in my own life. In my culture we look to, and learn from our ancestors. Our stories, values and traditions get passed down from generation to generation. As a mother myself, I try to instill the importance of our culture and where we come from in my children. The image is of raven parents looking back at the past, the moon. As well as forward to the future, the sun. Creating that bridge in traditional colors, red and black. The young children ravens look up towards their parents and depend on them for protection and guidance. I chose to make them blue and yellow as they are each their own unique individuals.



The moon looking back represents the past and the sun represents looking forward to the future.”

You can email Shannon Robinson to receive Crystal’s contact information. You can also find Crystal on Facebook or Instagram (@crystalrosechristopherson).

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