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Julie Nagam: locating the little heartbeats

Gallery 1C03


small red flowers on a prickly stem

Julie Nagam, Fireweed, 2018, painting into animation and projection. Courtesy of the artist.

January 10 – February 16, 2019

Opening reception:
Thursday, January 10, 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Gallery 1C03
Remarks at 4:30 pm by Dr. Annette Trimbee, President of the University of Winnipeg, and Dr. Niigaan Sinclair. Launch of illustrated exhibit publication featuring essay by Dr. Niigaan Sinclair.

Panel discussion:
 Tuesday, January 15 at 1:00 pm in Convocation Hall (2nd floor of Wesley Hall at the University of Winnipeg)
Speakers include Dr. Delia Gavrus, Dr. Julie Nagam, Dr. Niigaan Sinclair, and Carl Smith. Moderated by Dr. Serena Keshavjee.
This event was recorded and can be found online here.

ASL can be provided for these events with two weeks' notice by contacting the Gallery's Director/Curator.


locating the little heartbeats is a solo exhibition of a new multi-media installation by Métis, German/Syrian artist Julie Nagam.

In her art, Nagam reads the land as a valuable archive of memory and as a witness. Her installations bring important relational concepts through painting with light, projection and animation. These multi-sensory creations incorporate drawing, painting, sculpture, video and sounds from natural elements. Nagam’s artworks result in interactive and transformative experiences for the audience and create the conditions of drawing the natural world indoors.

The impetus for Nagam’s work stems from her concern for the environment, water systems, and land based knowledge. Issues around unclean drinking water, food sustainability, foraging, rapid melting of the polar ice caps, chemically-contaminated lakes and the finite nature of water are all alarming realities that society faces. Through her art, Nagam offers hope: “Our survival and our continuation as a people are tied to Indigenous knowledge of the land and a return or an extension of these land-based practices is what will bring us into the future”

Each of the works in locating the little heartbeats will invoke the magical elements of flora that are indigenous to this area to remind viewers of the healing qualities of each plant. Nagam’s research will result in drawings that will be “brought to life” via digital technologies as moving images onto a series of monitors and projections. This “living ecosystem” will consider the properties and lifelines that plant life and the land offers to the human world.

Dr. Julie Nagam (Métis, German/Syrian) is the Chair of the History of Indigenous Art in North America, a joint appointment between the University of Winnipeg and the Winnipeg Art Gallery. She is an Associate Professor in the History department at the University of Winnipeg. Her multi-media art installations where white pines lay over the water and singing our bones home have been shown in Canada, England, Brazil, France and New Zealand. Her recent installations include the public artwork Electrical Currents for the Winnipeg Arts Council; Manitowapow, speaking to the moon commissioned for Toronto’s Nuit Blanche; and our future is in the land: if we listen to it for the Smithsonian National Museum of the America Indian in New York and A Space in Toronto.

 An exhibition publication related to this exhibition features a contextual essay by Dr. Niigaan Sinclair. Visit our publications webpage for more information.

Gallery 1C03 gratefully acknowledges financial assistance for this programming from the Manitoba Arts Council.

Gallery 1C03 hours: Monday - Friday: 12:00 - 4:00 p.m., Saturday: 1:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Admission is free and everyone is welcome. 
Physical accessibility: Gallery 1C03 is located on ground level, but visitors may require the assistance of the gallery attendant to open the gallery door.

For more information contact:
Jennifer Gibson, Director/Curator, Gallery 1C03
1st floor, Centennial Hall, The University of Winnipeg
515 Portage Ave, Winnipeg MB R3B 2E9
204.786.9253 | j.gibson@uwinnipeg.ca