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SEED Lab, a Center to Incubate Solutions for Energy and Equity through Design, Opens May 4

The center will host free workshops, arts events and community activities about climate, housing, immigration and other topics

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – SEED Lab, a center to bring artists, designers, engineers and community members together to propose solutions to climate change and related challenges, opens to the public May 4, 2019. It is located in a building in the downtown Design District, across from the Anchorage Museum.

Launched in partnership with the Municipality of Anchorage and the Anchorage Museum, SEED Lab is one of five winners of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge. The Challenge awarded $1 million each to five cities to create temporary public art projects that address important civic issues.

SEED Lab kicks off with free events and activities planned around the Anchorage Museum’s North x North Summit and Festival happening May 1-5. During North x North, the SEED Lab building and adjacent parking lot on 6th Avenue will host a public re-use/recycle workshop where artists will demonstrate ways to artistically and creatively repurpose old posters, t-shirts, rubber boots and broken pottery.


Curating the North: SEED Lab Workshop
10 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 4, Anchorage Museum Art of the North galleries
Join us for a conversation about language, images and ideas about Northern identity and how it relates to landscape and climate. Facilitated by artist-researcher Andreas Hoffmann of the Arctic Culture Lab. RSVP to Free.

 COMP/act/: Open House
11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum atrium
This open house-style event presents creative solutions for Anchorage housing that address the needs of the modern lifestyle. Five competitive teams made up of cross-disciplinary professionals display their designs. Visitors are encouraged to choose which housing they would want to buy based on the provided rendering, floor plan and list of amenities. Cookies provided. Free.

Local Sound/Arctic Portals
11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum atrium
Join Matthew Jull and Leena Cho of the Arctic Design Group to experience how we understand our Northern place through sound recordings. Record your own sound and email it to and we can provide you with your own personalized sound experience, making you a citizen scientist.

Design the Arctic for the Future with Lateral North
11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum atrium
Imagine a new hyperloop transportation system and other speculative futures. Facilitated by designer Graham Hogg of Lateral North, visitors of all ages can explore and interact with three large maps exploring three different scales (citywide, regional and international) and imagine the possible futures of Anchorage within these contexts. Explore the ‘Arctic city’ of the future, new technologies and how we create sustainable, welcoming and healthy spaces to live in in our future. Community members will be asked to contribute their ideas to a series of smaller maps about their Future: Arctic, which will inform a final map of visions that will be created by Lateral North. Free.

Community Repair Workshop
11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4 SEED Lab and adjacent parking lot, corner of NW corner 6th Ave. and A St.
Join the Anchorage Museum, artists, designers and other community members and organizations for the first SEED Lab Repair Workshop. Bring your old t-shirts and posters, your tired rubber boots and your broken pottery and give them new life with the help of artists. Located at SEED Lab and adjacent parking lot on the northwest corner of 6th Ave. and A St. Free.

Mother Tongue Embroidery Workshop
1 to 3 p.m., Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum atrium
Join artists Shaghayegh Cyrous and Magdalena Jadwiga Härtelova to create and decorate a shirt that represents your mother tongue(s). In an informal craft session, participants discuss how speaking different languages changes our perception and people’s perception of us. Embroider, paint, collage and otherwise transform your shirt. All while speaking (only) in our mother tongue(s). Materials for shirt making will be supplied. If you want to bring any special decorations that remind you of your language such as ribbons, fabrics, beads, patches, etc., please, feel free to do so. All are welcome to drop by. Registration required via email: Free.

COMP/act/: Final Jury Presentation
2 to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum auditorium
Five teams present their proposed designs that address livability, feasibility, occupancy and context for better middle-income housing in Anchorage. The site is a typical Fairview lot, which is 50 feet by 140 feet. Each team worked through a rigorous process to meet code with the Planning Department and feasibility with finance professionals. Within these real-world challenges, this design competition aims to maximize quality of life and present designs that reflect the current needs and preferences for middle-income Anchorage residents. Top three winning teams will be announced and awarded $9,000. This project is a collaboration with the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation Live.Work.Play. Initiative, Anchorage Museum, Cook Inlet Housing Authority and Fairview Community Council, with funding support from the Rasmuson Foundation. Free.

SEED Lab Pitch Event
3:30 to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum auditorium
Come to hear your neighbors and friends pitch ideas for SEED Lab. The Pitch Event offers residents and creative practitioners a way to propose ideas and solutions for city problems. Free.

 The Song My Mother Sings (Mother Tongue Open Mic)
6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 4 Anchorage Museum atrium
The Mother Tongue Song Exchange is something between an open mic, a karaoke and an old-friend’s dinner party. Everyone is invited to come and share a song their mother (or grandmother or auntie or friend’s mom) used to sing. We would love to learn to sing along, too. If you feel brave, we would love to include a recording of your song into the Mother Tongue Songs Against Distance collection. Free.


Anchorage is host to some of the key issues facing the globe. As a Northern community, Anchorage is transforming environmental, social and economic challenges into opportunities that potentially can be shared with communities around the world.

“Alaska’s climate is changing twice as fast as the rest of the country,” says Mayor Ethan Berkowitz. “We have to think at least twice as fast and create at least twice as fast so we can meaningfully ameliorate the social, economic and environmental impacts of climate change. SEED lab brings our community’s brain power and creativity together in ways that can make a real difference.”

All events at and affiliated with SEED Lab invite Anchorage residents to collaborate with each other and with visiting artists and designers to envision a healthy, resilient and equitable community.

“We believe that creativity can spur compelling outcomes. We believe that the creative process ‘seeds’ ideas that lead to new ways of listening to communities and can provide opportunities for all,” says Anchorage Museum Director and CEO Julie Decker.

SEED Lab is made possible in partnership with the Municipality of Anchorage with support from Bloomberg Philanthropies; Rasmuson Foundation; Surdna Foundation; Atwood Foundation; the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency; Alaska Airlines and Wells Fargo.

About the Anchorage Museum
The largest museum in Alaska, the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center tells the true story of the North by connecting people, expanding perspectives and encouraging global dialogue about the North and its distinct environment. Learn more at

About the Municipality of Anchorage
Located at 61 degrees North, Alaska’s most populous city is the fourth largest city by land in the United States. Anchorage is the traditional homeland of the Dena’ina Athabascan people. City residents represent diverse backgrounds, and more than 100 languages are spoken within Anchorage and the surrounding Mat-Su Valley. The Chugach mountains east of Anchorage hold glaciers, rivers and wildlife and make up one the nation’s largest state parks and national forests.

Janet Asaro,, 907-929-9229
Jeanette Anderson Moores,, 907-929-9227
Kristin DeSmith,,  907-343-7133