Carleton Curatorial Lab (CCL): Keeping Record: The Documentary Impulse in Inuit Art
Curated by Amy Prouty
02 May – 28 August 2016
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Inuit art has often been described by critics as “memory art,” understood as having a seemingly apolitical focus on pre-contact life meant to appeal to the primitivist sensibilities of collectors in the South. This exhibition recasts such analyses of the subjects addressed by Inuit artists by viewing their depictions of traditional practices as acts of cultural resilience, in which they record their knowledge during periods of seismic change. This documentary impulse is seen across all regions of Inuit Nunangat from the historical period to the present day. The artists in this exhibition create artworks that strengthen Inuit culture, communicate its unique values, and advocate for its importance to non-Inuit audiences.
Keeping Record features works by Malaya Akulukjuk, Thomassie Kudluk, Zacharias Kunuk, Agnes Nanogak, Joanessie Napartook, Josie Papialook, Kananginak Pootoogook, Andrew Qappik, and Elisha Sanguya from Carleton University Art Gallery’s Inuit collection as well as contemporary photography by local artist Barry Pottle.