Nancy Hager is a Northern Tutchone woman of the Crow clan and a proud citizen of the First Nation of Nacho Nyak Dun. She grew up in Mayo, Yukon and later spent time in the mining town of Faro before moving home again to be close to her family and ancestral roots in the Nacho Nyak (Stewart River) region.
Nancy’s artistic inspiration is firmly rooted in the natural beauty of her homeland and in the wisdom of her Elders. Sewing and beading were Nancy’s first experiences with creating art as a young girl of six years. She learned to sew moccasins and mittens with her grandmother Mary who was a skilled artisan renowned for her exquisite floral designs on home tanned moose hide. Nancy is self-taught in moose hair tufting and used that technique to develop her own unique quilling method to make flowers and other designs. She learned to work with fish scales from Janet Grandjambe in the Northwest Territories. She attended Portage College in Lac La Biche, Alberta to study Indigenous arts and culture.
Gathering materials for Nancy’s art has become a family affair. She goes out on the land with her family members and friends to harvest the hides, furs, fish scales, porcupine quills and bark to make her art. Nothing is wasted and she passes on her deep sense of connection and love for the natural world as part of her teachings. She loves to share her knowledge of ancient and evolving artistic practices.
Over the years Nancy has added to her repertoire of materials and techniques, always looking for new ways to incorporate colours and shapes from the natural world with her unique artistic vision. Today her work includes three main elements: moose hair tufting, porcupine quillwork, and fish scales.
Yukon First Nations Culture and Tourism Association
1-1109 Front Street (White Pass Building)
Whitehorse, Yukon Y1A-5G4