Senungetuk created the first BSNC logo
BSNC shareholder and internationally renowned artist Ron Senungetuk passed away Jan. 21, 2020 in Homer, Alaska. Senungetuk was born in 1933 in a sod hut and spent his early childhood in Wales (Kiŋigin). Ron and his younger brother Joe Senungetuk were taught how to carve ivory by their uncle Andrew Seetook. The first BSNC logo was created by Senungetuk.
Senungetuk attended Mt. Edgecumbe High School where art instructor George Federoff recognized his incredible talent working with wood and applied for a scholarship for him to attend the School for American Craftsmen at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York. In 1961, he won a one-year scholarship to go to graduate school in Oslo, Norway, where he met his future wife, Turid, a silversmith. In 1965, Senungetuk founded and directed the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) Native Arts Center, the nation’s first university Native art degree program.
Senungetuk’s artwork is on display in private collections, offices, museums and galleries throughout Alaska, the U.S. and internationally. He has been recognized with numerous awards, including the Alaska Governor’s Award for the Arts, the Rasmuson Foundation’s Distinguished Artist Award and the Alaska State Council on the Arts Lifetime Achievement Award. He also was named Professor Emeritus of Art at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. His support of education was expressed through his many donations of artwork to Bering Straits Foundation scholarship program auctions. Ron Senungetuk’s influence on Native and non-Native students during his tenure at UAF continues, as many of his students now carry on his legacy as artists and teachers.