About Dennis Shorty

About Dennis Shorty

About Dennis Shorty – a Musician, a Master Carver, an Artist, a Craftsman, a Knowledge Keeper and Teller of traditional Kaska heritage stories that are passed down orally from generation to generation. 

Born of Kaska indigenous heritage, Dennis Shorty and has lived most of his life near Ross River, Yukon. By watching his grandfather and father carve traditional tools and toys, Dennis became interested in art.

For him, making art is a spiritual path and a way to communicate with his ancestors. After a difficult period in Residential Schools during the 60’s and 70’s when the Canadian government tried to assimilate Indigenous peoples and wipe out their culture, Dennis has led a strong personal mission to revive his cultural heritage.

Dennis’s mission in life, now supported by his wife, Jenny, is to bring the rich folk art, the traditional music, the Kaska language and the foods of his ancestors, to a wider audience. The couple and their business continue to be based in the community of Ross River, Yukon.

As part of rediscovering his Kaska heritage, Dennis and Jenny gather native plants and herbs from the bush and get traditional meats like moose from indigenous hunters, all of which they make into a variety of delicious meals for their homestay visitors.

Dont’t look to the ground when you’re walking, always pay attention; listen to all that is around you – trees, birds, wind.

Dennis Shorty

Additional Work

Dennis Shorty has also been featured in a variety of films. You can check them out below.


Thank you for this amazing day. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with my mother and me. I think a lot about this day and the inspiring words you said to me. It has become a part of me, my art and what I share with others. Your kind soul and willingness to share and being a knowledge keeper is everyone's responsibility. Culture is held by all, not just by some. Your work is beautiful, and I treasure the day I got to spend with you.
Tammy W
4 Menu Art

View work by Dennis Shorty

4 Menu Music 3

Learn about the music of Dena Zagi

4 M workshop2


Participate in workshops by Dennis Shorty

4 M HomestayExperience5

Stay in Ross River