Katurte – to come together

Bethel and Nome
2023 Fellowship AwardFolk & Traditional Arts

About the artist group

Katurte, Yup’ik for “to come together,” includes Nicolette Corbett, a Yu’pik artist and mother from Bethel, and Katie O’Connor, an Inupiaq artist from Nome.

2023 Fellowship Award

Corbett and O’Connor will collaborate to create the first Alaska Yup’ik alphabet coloring book for children ages 5-12. With their skills, knowledge and relationships with Yup’ik educators, they will create a powerful, accessible, relatable and educational coloring book to help parents and teachers pass on traditional learning, knowledge and experiences to their children. The coloring book will feature animals and objects for each letter in the Yup’ik alphabet. Corbett and O’Conner hope to expand their knowledge about printmaking, publishing, and copyrighting.

Corbett intends to seek guidance from Yup’ik educators to ensure proper terminology and to correctly showcase the Yup’ik alphabet. O’Connor will design all the graphics. Both intend to gather knowledge from Alaska Native organizations, tribes and corporations.

Corbett and O’Conner say they have both received so much from relatives, teachers, mentors and elders and see this as an opportunity for them to give back to their community. Their new business, Ciuneq, Yup’ik for “what lies ahead,” supports their collaboration. “A Yup’ik language alphabet book is both built from the Yup’ik language and builds the Yup’ik language,” they said.

Artwork samples

“Fishcamp and Sunset,” a watercolor by Katie O’Connor.
“Uluaq and Fillets,” a graphic design by Katie O’Connor.
“Alaska Sunset,” a graphic design by Katie O’Connor.