South of Inuit Nunangat: A Conversation

Gallery 1C03

South of Inuit Nunangat: A Conversation
Re-scheduled as an on-line event for October 20, 2020.
Visit new event webpage.

Please join us for this special event presented in conjunction with Alootook Ipellie: Walking Both Sides of an Invisible Border, a touring exhibition that was on view at Gallery 1C03 from February 27 - March 13, 2020. The exhibition was produced by Carleton University Art Gallery and curated by Sandra Dyck, Heather Igloliorte and Christine Lalonde.

Alootook Ipellie (1951-2007) was born at Nuvuqquq on Baffin Island and grew up in Iqaluit before moving to Ottawa in the late 1960s to attend high school. Over the next four decades, mostly spent in Ottawa, he worked as an artist, writer, editor and cartoonist. He often described himself as “living in two worlds” – North and South – and his remarkable creative work reflects his lifelong struggle to reconcile these worlds.

Exhibition co-curator Heather Igloliorte (Nunatsiavut) will moderate a public conversation with three urban Inuit women currently residing in Winnipeg about their experiences living and working outside of Inuit Nunangat. Speakers include cultural advocate Nikki Komaksiutiksak, emerging architect Nicole Luke, and curator/artist Jocelyn Piirainen.

This event has been made possible, in part, by funding from the Department of Canadian Heritage and with support of The University of Winnipeg History department and the Manitoba Inuit Association.

Featured speakers:

Dr. Heather Igloliorte (Inuk, Nunatsiavut) holds the Tier 1 University Research Chair in Circumpolar Indigenous Arts and is an associate professor in the Department of Art History at Concordia University in Montreal, QC. Heather leads the Inuit Futures in Arts Leadership: The Pilimmaksarniq/ Pijariuqsarniq Project, which aims to empower circumpolar Indigenous peoples to become leaders in the arts through training and mentorship. Heather has been a curator for fifteen years and has been published by Duke University Press, Art Journal, TOPIA, PUBLIC, McGill - Queen’s University Press​, RACAR, and the Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies, among others.

Nikki Komaksiutiksak is an Inuit woman from Chesterfield Inlet, Nunavut. She is a mother of five and is co-founder and Acting Executive Director for Tunngasugit Resource Centre which offers front-line services to assist Inuit transitioning to life in the city. Though Winnipeg is now her home, Nikki has found the strength to preserve her “Inukness” living in the southern part of Canada. She demonstrates a passion for her cultural identity by teaching Inuit history and culture to others and through throat singing and heartfelt musical performances. Nikki has represented Manitoba and Inuit at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Summer Games and, more recently, the 2015 Indigenous Music Awards in Winnipeg. She has recorded music with local Canadian talent, including the Weakerthans, Demetra Penner and Moses Mayes. Nikki truly believes that it is critical that Inuit culture is remembered, recognized and celebrated throughout all of Canada.

Nicole Luke is an urban Inuk who is passionate about culture and design. Born in Yellowknife, NWT, Nicole is originally from the Kivalliq region of Nunavut where her family resides. She has lived in Winnipeg for the majority of her life and received her Bachelor of Environmental Design degree from the University of Manitoba in 2019. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in the Faculty of Architecture and plans to graduate in the Spring of 2021. Nicole aspires to become one of the first Inuit architects. She is focused on the design realities communities face within rural and non-rural areas and believes the built environment is a key factor in socio-economic agency. She is committed to indigenous initiatives and well-being as well as sustainable building practices.

Jocelyn Piirainen is an urban Inuk, originally from Ikaluktutiak (Cambridge Bay), NU and currently working as the Assistant Curator of Inuit Art at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. When not working as a curator, Piirainen's educational background has focused on the arts, particularly film and new media. Her current artistic practice primarily involves analog photography and film - mostly experimenting with Polaroids and Super 8 film. She has contributed to publications such as Canadian Art, Canadian Geographic and Inuit Art Quarterly. Alongside this, Piirainen has designed and developed various exhibitions, curatorial projects, screenings and arts festivals at a handful of galleries and artist-run centres, including SAW Video Association in Ottawa, ON and the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, ON, among others.

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
Phone: 204.786.9253