The Sistine Chapel of Alaska

One of the hallmarks and highlights of The Grove, is a piece of artwork that has distinguished the main hall from the outset of its existence as the Old Tyme Saloon in the early 1980’s.  A patron of the establishment was commissioned to add some colorful flavor to the building.  Longtime resident T. E. Barber began his whimsical ceiling-scape masterpiece, depicting heaven, hell, and various cultural aspects of Alaska living in the middle.  His work has affectionately become known as the Sistine Chapel of Alaska over the years.

sistine chapel of Alaska on the ceiling of The Grove alaska permaculture farm that also functions now as a Talkeetna venue and provides Talkeetna lodging

Two of the twelve ceiling panels of Alaska’s Sistine Chapel.

Still a rough and tumble town back in the early 80’s (remember, Alaska is still a pretty young state and the highway north out of Anchorage younger still), Barber’s work incorporates some ominous imagery of the times back then. Some nudity and other adult images are seen in some sections, so pleased be advised if you’re easily offended by these sights, or have others in your family or group who might be offended. In our humble opinion, it’s intriguing food for thought and discussion.


Below is a slideshow containing each section of our artistic and eccentric ceiling – known locally as the Sistine Chapel of Alaska! A blend of T.E. Barber’s thoughts at the time of creation in the early and mid 1980’s of heaven, hell, and Alaska somewhere in between…

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