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On the North/South horizon

In case you missed it, multidisciplinary artists in-residence from Nordic Lab and Koomuatuk Curley shared their works-in-progress as they venture down unexplored creative paths.

Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley work in progress

Work in progress by Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley. Image courtesy of Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley.

 

Launched in 2020, Nordic Lab is a Galerie SAW Gallery initiative, created with major support from the Canada Council for the Arts and located in Ottawa, on unceded Algonquin Anishinaabe territory. As Director, Taqralik Partridge (who is also an artist, writer and curator originally from Kuujjuaq, Nunavik) oversees Nordic Lab’s operations as an Indigenous-led research and production space for artists from circumpolar regions. With a studio space named after the late Inuk artist Annie Pootoogook, exhibitions, workshops, Indigenous youth-centred programming and more, Nordic Lab aims to forge exchange and collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities with contemporary art production. Being located in Ottawa drives this connection even further, as the city has the largest urban Inuit population outside of Canada’s North. Over the past several months, Nordic Lab has been (remotely) hosting five multidisciplinary artists as part of its residency program.

Nordic Lab Barry Pottle

Image courtesy of Barry Pottle.

Nordic Lab Barry Pottle slideshow
Snowy owl

Image courtesy of Barry Pottle.

Nordic Lab Barry Pottle slideshow
Nordic Lab Barry Pottle

Image courtesy of Barry Pottle.

Nordic Lab Barry Pottle slideshow

Continuing the AGO’s TD Ready Commitment Art in the Spotlight series, three out of the five artists-in-residence spoke virtually with Partridge about broadening their practice with new works-in-progress.

Barry Pottle (featured in AGOinsider last year) is a photographer and artist living and working in Ottawa. Originally from Nunatsiavut, Pottle focuses his photography on documenting urban Inuit life. His photographs are largely observational as he examines subjects in and around Ottawa from different vantage points. The group exhibition Vectors of Transmission at the Art of Guelph includes his photographs taken during the pandemic.  

Now based in Saskatoon, Tarralik Duffy is an artist, jeweller and writer hailing from Salliq, Nunavut. Her work has been showcased across Canada and internationally. In October of this year, her work will again be featured in the exhibitions ᐃᓅᓯᕋ | Inuusira: Tarralik Duffy with Pitseolak Ashoona at the Art Gallery of Guelph and Atautchikun | wȃhkôtamowin at the Remai Modern. Under her design label Ugly Fish, she creates clothing, jewellery and textiles. Her focus recently has been on her visual art practice, which includes graphic Pop art-style prints and sculptural works.

Geronimo Inutiq  (formerly known as Madeskimo or DJ Mad Eskimo) is originally from Iqaluit, Nunavut. As a multimedia artist, he works in music production, DJing, performance, film, video, digital images and installation. He gave viewers an overview of his newest project I Am Calling Home that explores concepts around community broadcasting on a forthcoming blog titled Nordique Virtual Broadcast Service Laboratory. A part of his new work will be featured in an exhibition at the Canadian Centre for Architecture next year.

Watch the Nordic Lab Art in the Spotlight virtual talk in full below.

 

Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley work in progress

Work in progress by Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley. Image courtesy of Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley.

 

Kuzy Curley slideshow
Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley work in progress

Work in progress by Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley. Image courtesy of Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley.

 

Kuzy Curley slideshow
Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley work in progress

Work in progress by Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley. Image courtesy of Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley.

 

Kuzy Curley slideshow
Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley work in progress

Work in progress by Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley. Image courtesy of Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley.

 

Kuzy Curley slideshow

Last week in June, Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley spoke virtually with Georgiana Uhlyarik,  AGO Fredrik S. Eaton Curator, Canadian Art. Originally from Kinngait, Nunavut, Curley works across media as a sculptor, photographer, director and videographer and comes from a family of celebrated artists including Pitseolak Ashoona and Tim Pitsiulak. Coincidentally, June 2021 marks three years since the opening of the AGO exhibition Tunirrusiangit: Kenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak, when Curley and Uhlyarik worked alongside each other on the curatorial team (which included Partridge as well). 

For the first time publically, Curley shared the photographs and larger-than-life sculpture (see images above) he has been working on to honour the artistic and ancestral legacy of his great-grandmother Pitseolak Ashoona. His photography documents present-day locations across the landscapes and roads she would frequent, living and working as an artist in Kinngait. The massive scale of the granite sculpture—which he has been working on outside and surrounded by family—echoes Ashoona's significant influence on her descendants and Inuit Art as a whole. 

Watch below to learn more about the new work Curley is making, including large-scale sculptures (for which he is well known), photographs and film.

Get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at Tunirrusiangit: Kenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak in this AGOinsider story. Stay tuned later this year for the unveiling of the exhibition Shuvinai Ashoona: Beyond the Visible, which includes new works by the renowned Inuk artist, also from Kinngait.

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