Northern Wildlife Inspired Artwork

5 min read 

These mugs have literally been years in the making. Lindsay, Manager of Visitor Services has been working with local ceramic’s artist Astrid Kruse to create something exceptionally unique for the Yukon Wildlife Preserve and its visitors. 

The Visitor Services team are working hard to connect with local artist to bring the connections to nature home with you. We strongly feel that by taking the time to explore these partnerships we can create unique items that guests to the Preserve can take home all while knowing their purchase in the Preserve’s Little Gift Shop not only supports these northern people but all revenue from the retail sales goes back into the operations of the Preserve, supporting the northern animals in our care. 

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Photo of moose in water.

Astrid has a strong connection to Canada’s North, having grown up in Yellowknife, NWT she moved to the Yukon in 2016 and this is where the connection with the Preserve started. Her ceramic practice has taken her many places outside of the North, taking courses, providing workshops, and a year-long residency in Alberta. When family called, Astrid made the move out east but continued to work on this special ceramics project with the Preserve. 

Astrid’s work has always been influenced by her physical environment, the land and animals so it was a natural fit to work together. 

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The mugs Astrid has created for the Wildlife Preserve are one-of-kind and limited! A custom order with our logo required two firings – making the mugs incredibly strong and durable and with a crystalline glasslike form. Each mug is unique from the size and shape to the design itself. Hand made and hand drawn using a special technique called sgraffito which is a delicate scratched design on the clay make each ceramic mug a one-of-a-kind, work of art. 

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Photo of staff giving moose oxygen.

Just as Astrid is inspired by the land, she used the Preserve’s animals and landscape to inspire her artwork. The small details of the mugs include species specific tracks on the handle and a large track on the bottom of the mug. 

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Photo of team providing care for moose in the field.

The handle of each mug has a large thumb placement to ensure you can thoroughly enjoy that full morning cup of java.

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Photo of staff using stethoscope to listen to moose heart rate.

Muskox approved!

These mugs can be purchased exclusively on-site at the Preserve’s Little Gift Shop. They retail for $72.50.

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Spring (mid-May) 2023, mugs are back! BUT, a very limited supply of Caribou design only! 

The mugs (43 of them) were first featured in the Little Gift Shop, August 14 2021. Two weeks after their debut they were half sold out! 

Photo of staff using stethoscope to listen to moose heart rate.
Lindsay Caskenette

Lindsay Caskenette

Manager of Visitor Services

Lindsay joined the Wildlife Preserve team March 2014. Originally from Ontario, she came to the Yukon in search of new adventures and new career challenges. Lindsay holds a degree in Environmental Studies with honours from Wilfrid Laurier University and brings with her a strong passion to share what nature, animals and the environment can teach us.


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Yukon Wildlife Preserve
Box 20191
Whitehorse, Yukon
Y1A 7A2

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