The Youth Artist-in-Residence (YAIR) Program at Klondike Gold Rush NHP launched in 2019 following expressed interest from that summer’s In My Backyard cohort in art. YAIR is tailored to the individual artist’s preferred expression: it is a program for visual artists, writers, actors, musicians and other creators! Artists have created art in national parks since the late 19th century when famed Hudson River School painters captured the majestic views of our nation’s western parks. Today, national parks host over 50 Artist-in-Residency Programs!
Klondike hosted its first youth artists – both alumni of In My Backyard – at the start of 2020. Discover Eliana and Marianne’s path to the YAIR Program! Through collaboration with NPS staff and independent project design, youth artists (ages 13 -18) create original content showcased in Klondike’s visitor center, youth programming and social media. This is a professional development opportunity, flexible with school schedules, with youth receiving stipends and school credit as compensation.
Are you interested in the Youth Artist-in-Residence Program? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
Read about Marianne and Eliana below!
By Marianne Zhou, 2019 In My Backyard Alum and current Youth Artist-in-Residency at Klondike Gold Rush NHP
In the summer before my senior year in high school, I joined the Klondike Gold Rush National Park’s IMBY team – short for In My Backyard. Throughout those two months, I explored the nature and community of the Greater Seattle Area with a team of fellow high schoolers and the amazing mentors at the Klondike. Despite being a Seattleite for 10 years, IMBY brought me to beautiful communities and parks I’ve never been to, or even heard of. Even after I left the IMBY team after the summer, I continue to visit those places, such as the Danny Woo Community Garden, a space in International District-Chinatown that locals share to grow various crops within the city. I am excited to return to the Klondike as a Youth Artist-In-Residency (YAIR). Through this opportunity, I would love to expand on the inspirations I took from the Klondike exhibit and the city of Seattle over the summer.
In addition to combining my passion for nature and art, I would love to combine nature with STEM by pursuing environmental engineering in college. On weekends, I am a part of Model UN, where I participate in heated debates about international issues. Outside of school, I am a part of the swim team. My favorite events are 100-yard backstroke and 50-yard freestyle! I also enjoy volunteering with the Super Joey Foundation, a non-profit organization that is dedicated towards supporting families that are impacted by childhood cancer. In the winter, you can find me on the slopes of Whistler, skiing and snowboarding with my family. I hope that through my time with the Klondike, I can bring the beauty of nature to the city, and show the kind of world that I see through my eyes in art.
By Eliana Pollock, 2018 In My Backyard Alum and current Youth Artist-in-Residency at Klondike Gold Rush NHP
Hi there! My name is Eliana, and I am currently a senior at Redmond High School and a Running Start student at Bellevue College. In the fall, I will begin my college studies at the University of Washington. Outside of academics, I spend my time running cross-country, reading books, listening to and playing music, leading and volunteering with the Redmond Interact Club, and of course, making art!
Since 2018, when I first interned at the Klondike through the IMBY program, the National Park Service has been like a second home as I met many amazing individuals, learned more about the world around me, and had countless creative opportunities as both an intern and a commissioned artist.
Art has been a major part of my life for as long as I can remember. I love bringing ideas to life, depicting meaningful moments and emotions, and exploring – both different artistic styles as well as the world around me. Now, as a youth artist-in-residence at the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, I can’t wait to continue creating for the Park Service!