More About Keith

Keith Wolfe Smarch is the first Yukon carver to receive any external recognition in this century. Although usually classified as a “traditional artist”, Wolfe Smarch has effected dramatic change in the carving tradition, creating new visions from traditional themes. Of Tlingit and German/English parents, Keith was born into the Killer Whale clan of the Tlingit Nation in Whitehorse in 1961. His Tlingit name, Shakoon, means Mountain Bird. Keith began carving in 1981, studying with Dembsey Bob, a respected Tahltan Tlingit carver of the Pacific North-West. The stories, songs and dances of the Tlingit people stimulate Keith’s sculptural expression in ivory, bone, and wood. Keith has studied wood carvings in Yukon, Alaska, British Columbia, and Japan. His work has been exhibited and can be found in national public, corporate, and private collections throughout North America, Europe, and Japan. The most prominent piece can be found in His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales’ private collection.