Confluence Seeks Indigenous Emerging Artist/Educator

Deadline extended! Now open until September 14, 2023.

Confluence is a community-supported nonprofit with the mission to connect people to the history, living cultures and ecology of the Columbia River system through Indigenous voices. We work through five completed public art landscapes, educational programs and community gatherings in collaboration with northwest Tribes, communities and the celebrated artist Maya Lin.

Confluence seeks an energetic and collaborative Indigenous Emerging Artist/Educator to work with our small and dedicated staff to help deliver educational programming and produce culturally relevant art. This candidate must have a cultural connection to the Indigenous Tribes of the Columbia River system in Oregon, Washington or Idaho. This position is primarily remote and requires some travel to schools, our sites, partner organizations and on field trips. Meetings may be required at the Confluence office at the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site in Vancouver, Washington. Work hours are flexible.

This is a year-long, hourly fellowship position for 30 hours per week at $25 per hour. Confluence is an equal opportunity employer and we strongly encourage applicants of all backgrounds to apply.

For more information about us, please visit To apply, please send a cover letter, resume and list of references to with the words “Indigenous Emerging Artist/Educator” in the subject line. We will begin reviewing applications as we receive them. The position will remain open until September 14, 2023.

Job Title: Indigenous Emerging Artist/Educator
Reports To: Executive Director

Job Description:

Who: Emerging Indigenous Artist/Educator with cultural ties to the Tribes of the Columbia River ecosystem. Applicants can come from any artistic set of knowledge connected to Indigenous traditions and cultures, and have previous experience or ability to connect with K-12 students as part of the program.

Employment: The Confluence Emerging Artist Educator is a paid internship at Confluence, working an estimated 30 hours per week. Half the time will be spent developing art and half would be spent working in classrooms with students and teachers. This could include art projects and field trips. The artist would coordinate work hours with our Education Program Manager and would be flexible in a way that encourages art development while meeting our commitments to school programs. As a temporary employee, the artist would not be eligible for medical and retirement benefits. We will work with you to see what Tribal services or other healthcare/support services you may be eligible for. The position would include earned Paid Time Off.

Timeline: The program will run for at least 12 months, with an optional 3-month extension so that the Confluence Emerging Artist/Educator could spend time mentoring the next person to hold this position. The role would begin in October, 2023 to coincide with the start of the school year.

The first six weeks would consist mostly of introductions to Confluence staff, mentor artists, and our school partners, along with planning time for art development and teaching projects.

In the fall of 2023, we will organize a retreat for 15 of our artists and educators at the Roundhouse Foundation’s Pine Meadow Ranch near Sisters, Oregon. This is modeled after the Confluence Day of Sharing as an opportunity for our Indigenous artists and educators to gather, plan for the school year, and create lasting relationships with this artist and each other. Throughout the school year, we will work with the artist/educator to meet scheduled milestones for developing artwork and set goals for the number of schools and students to reach through educational programming. After the school programs have ended in June, the artist can spend two months concentrating on a possible art show or exhibit with our museum partners.

Mentorship: The Confluence Emerging Artist/Educator will have the opportunity to work in classrooms with Native educators, artists, and tradition keepers to share knowledge, stories, and space as they develop their path as an Indigenous artist. Mentorship may include learning opportunities from one’s Tribe/Tribal Community and may include learning around ethics of harvesting natural fibers/materials needed to create art. The mentors may serve on the Confluence Advisory Community, a group that will help select the artist and guide that person and Confluence as the program develops.

Art Creation: The Confluence Emerging Artist/Educator will produce a new and unique project that may be shared in museums, schools, or other agreed upon locations, for an agreed upon length of time. Possible institutional partners include the High Desert Museum, the Museum at Warm Springs, and the Columbia River Center for the Arts. The exhibit could include a public gathering, celebrating the accomplishments of the Confluence Emerging Artist/Educator in classrooms and mentorship, and introducing the art project created during the program.

This artwork is critically important for the Emerging Artist/Educator’s Confluence experience. When the fellowship ends, the art will remain the property of the artist. Confluence or our museum and foundation partners may ask to share the art at future events and images of the art and the creation process in marketing materials and social media.

Download flyer here. Please share widely!

This program is funding through a generous grant from The Roundhouse Foundation.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Coordinate with Education Program Manager to deliver programming in schools that connects students to the history, living cultures and ecology of the Columbia River system through Indigenous voices
  • Participate in field trips to Confluence sites and other culturally significant places along the Columbia River
  • Participate in Confluence staff meetings to coordinate programming
  • Represent Confluence at regional and national education meetings
  • Support and develop web content to support educational programming
  • Assist with grant application and documentation as needed
  • Assist in other Confluence programming such as Confluence Story Gatherings, Camp Confluence, Road Trips, tours, and work parties


  • Apparent cultural connection to the Indigenous Tribes of the Columbia River ecosystem
  • Residence in the bioregion of the Columbia River Ecosystem
  • Skills and experience in any art discipline, contemporary or traditional, including but not limited to painting, carving, weaving, storytelling, printmaking, drawing, sculpting, poetry, hand drum or other music performance or recording
  • Preferred experience working in educational settings, especially with K-12 students
  • Passion for educating people about Indigenous history, culture and ecological knowledge
  • Excellent time management skills, ability to multitask, prioritize work and make things happen
  • Attention to detail and problem-solving skills
  • Strong diplomatic and communication skills
  • Some level of education in art, Native American studies, cultural studies, environmental science or related fields