Programs for Adults

Check the calendar for a list of all upcoming events.

Visit the Virtual Museum page to explore the museum from home.

Upcoming Workshop

Flyer with title and images

Sustained Observation and Mindfulness Workshop

June 4, 3:00-5:30 PM  (Canceled)

Join artist Jonathan VanDyke for a rare opportunity to closely observe collection objects not on exhibit. VanDyke brings his unique eye on material culture and art to the museum's vast holdings, choosing objects made by historically marginalized and sometimes undetermined creators.  In an intimate experience of sustained observation, each participant will view and honor one of these objects, utilizing techniques that build mindfulness. The program offers participants a one-of-a-kind chance to meditate upon a collection object in great depth, and to share their findings with the group.

Cost: $25 (non-member), $20 (UAMN members)

Pre-registration required. Register online. (Registration Closed)

Image of Jonathan VanDyke

Over the last two decades New York City-based artist Jonathan VanDyke has built a practice contemplating the unfolding of works of art, objects, and human connection in dynamic relationship to the passing of time. He has exhibited his work internationally. Through workshops he leads audiences to sustain creativity and thoughtfulness in an increasingly distracted world.

In addition to the museum workshop, VanDyke will lead the class Reciprocal Art Practice in June, as part of UAF Interdisciplinary Programs. 

VanDyke's visit is coordinated by the UAF Office of Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Studies.

Image of J.VanDyke by Carolina Sandretto

Adult Bug Camp

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July 14 - 16, Friday 6 PM - 8 PM, Saturday and Sunday, 1 PM - 6:15 PM
Learn collection and processing methods needed to build an insect collection. Skills necessary to identify most groups to Order will be taught. Students will create a collection which will be broken into three groups: specimens the student can take home, specimens for the University of Alaska Museum Insect Collection, and specimens for the Teaching Collection.

Taught by Derek Sikes, UAMN Curator of Insects.

Register through UAF Summer Sessions.


Earth Sciences Curator Pat Druckenmiller shows fossils to a group of adults.

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Courses

(for adults 50+)

The museum partners with OLLI to offer a variety of courses, including Museum Graduate Student Research Sampler, The Science of Museum Collections, Introduction to Genetic Engineering, and Building a Bowhead Whale. Check back soon for more offerings!

Art Workshops


Explore the theme of your choice and experiment with color, texture and materials. Enjoy dessert and hot drinks, and create your own works of art with professional instruction. No previous experience necessary!

Check back for information on upcoming workshops!


Past Art Workshops:


Sustained Observation and Mindfulness (September 2021)

Person wearing a black sweatshirt, seen from the back, looking at a woven artwork.

Instructor: Jonathan VanDyke

Join artist Jonathan VanDyke for a series of dynamic guided reflections on collection objects that span centuries and cultures. Each participant will meditate upon a work of art or specimen from the natural world, sparking curiosity and wonder as they utilize techniques that build mindfulness and foster self-realization. The program offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity to get to know a collection object with great depth.

Image courtesy of Lauren Fleming.


Drawing of a pressed plant, next to several colored pencils.Botanical Illustration (October 2019)


Instructor: Karen Stomberg, local artist and educator

All skill levels are invited to draw from freshly dried local plant specimens. Participants will use professional materials to create a richly colored and detailed botanical illustration.
This workshop will take place over two sessions.

Image courtesy of Karen Stomberg.


Look Closer: Using a Microscope to Inspire Art (May 2019)Artwork: Lightness of Being 7 by Jennifer Moss


Instructor: Jennifer Moss, local artist

Use the elements and principles of art to inform contemporary compositions. Get inspired by looking at nature through the microscope and create your own work of art on wood panels.

Image: Lightness of Being 7, courtesy of Jennifer Moss.

Several colorful leaves, next to a painting of the same leaves.


Painting from Observation: Still Life Panels (April 2019)


Instructor: Gail Priday, local artist and educator

Discover the value of observational painting. We will cover the basics of color, composition, light, and more. No experience is needed for this hands-on workshop. Painters of all levels are welcome.

Image courtesy of Gail Priday.

Two colorful mixed-media artworks.


Mixed-Media Panels (April 2018)


Instructor: Madara Mason, local artist

No experience is needed for this hands-on workshop. Learn to layer paint, paper, wood, found objects, and a careful selection of colors to create dynamic mixed media pieces. Instructions and materials will be provided.

Image courtesy of Madara Mason.


Fused Glass (December 2016)


Six fused glass plates with various designs.Instructor: Margaret Donat, local artist and art educator

No experience is needed for this hands-on glass fusing workshop. You will learn the basics of creating glass objects in a kiln, and create a fused glass plate and a small pendant or ornament.

Image courtesy of Margaret Donat.


Encaustic Painting (September 2016)


Instructor: Katlian Stark, Artist and Gallery Assistant at Well Street

This hands-on encaustics workshop will examine approaches to using photographs, drawings, papers, and other objects that can be embedded into wax. We will address heating, fusing, and manipulating wax, as well as discuss colors, brushes, and where to find materials. Be inspired by museum objects as you experiment and create.