Portrait photo courtesy James Poulson

Teri Rofkar

USA Rasmuson Fellow

  • Crafts
  • Traditional Arts
  • 2006

    Sitka, AK


    Teri Rofkar is a Tlingit weaver who has been practicing the traditional arts of Raven’s Tail weaving and Spruce Root basketry for more than 20 years. She is an important advocate for those arts on the Northwest Coast and is particularly known for her attention to research in an effort to keep Tlingit artistic legacy alive. She has garnered great respect for practicing the traditional sourcing of materials, harvesting and processing roots, grasses, and wools for her work. Along with this dedication to ancestral traditions, Rofkar incorporates contemporary themes into her work (global warming, for example), insisting on the power of these older practices in addressing contemporary issues. In addition to creating her own weavings, she has eight apprentices, including her own daughter. Rofkar has participated in many exhibitions, demonstrating weaving in museums and cultural institutions in addition to showing her work. She was awarded the Governor’s Award for Alaska Native Art and recognized as a finalist for the Buffett Award for Native Leadership.

    Tlingit Dancing Robe, 1999; photo courtesy Chris Arend

    Tlingit Dancing Robe, 1999; photo courtesy Chris Arend