Unikkaaqtuarniq: Stories from the North and Feast for the Dead

    Saturday, February 18, 2017

    Admission

    Free

    Gallery 101 and Asinabka Film and Media Arts Festival present a screening highlighting Indigenous filmmaking from the Arctic. Experience a program of short films by Inuit and Sámi filmmakers as well as participating in a Feast for the Dead, in conjunction with the final day for the exhibition Universal Loss www.g101.ca/exhibits/universal-loss

     

    The Feast for the Dead is a potluck buffet with an extra setting at the table representing the space of someone that has recently died. The space can be set with tokens of remembrance, candles, and a "spirit plate", a food offering to the spirit of one remembered who is invited to join in the buffet. At the end of the feast, the food will be burned in a fire as an offering to the afterlife. Games and music and fun are part of the entertainment, as the Feast is a time of reflection as well as celebration.  

     

    Presented in partnership with the City of Ottawa, the Embassy of Finland, Gallery 101, the Ottawa Inuit Children's Centre, Skábmagovat film festival (Inari, Finland), and Winterlude. 

     

     

    Unikkaaqtuarniq (Inuit: Storytelling)

    Storytelling is an ancient form of magic, with the power to connect the past with the present, teach lessons, impart values, heal, to explain the world and connect us to the universe through language and mythology. The stories in this program come from the Inuit people of Canada and Sami of northern Scandinavia, Indigenous people who have thrived in the Arctic regions of the world for thousands of years, sharing stories inside the Sami lavvu and Inuit tupiq, enduring the changing seasons of dark and light, of colonialism, of climate change. Although these cultures live thousands of kilometres away from each other, they share a common history of resilience in their language, culture and magic through storytelling.

     

    About Asinabka Festival

    The mandate of the Asinabka Festival is to present an annual Indigenous film and media arts festival in the Nations Capital that allows independent artists - national, international, Indigenous, non-Indigenous - to share, present, and disseminate their work. The Asinabka Festival aims to highlight works that examine Indigenous issues and topics; to support media artists and filmmakers; to promote Indigenous cultures and languages; to educate people about First Nations, Métis, and Inuit issues in Canada, and about Indigenous issues internationally; to provide a space where Indigenous peoples can tell their own stories and see their own cultures reflected back at them; to entertain, to be innovative, and to present the best in Indigenous film.

     

    Programme

    The Big Lemming

    Mosha Folger • 2014 • 3:30 • Canada 

    Inspired by the work of Pudlo Pudlat, this stop-motion short tells the story of a male owl, driven by hunger, as he goes in search of food in a late-spring snowstorm – but in his pursuit he may have met his match.

     

    Award-winning stop-motion artist Mosha Folger is an Inuk writer, director and performer.

    He is originally from Iqaluit, Nunavut and now lives in Ottawa, Ontario. 

     

    The Orphan and the Polar Bear

    Neil Christopher • 2013 • 9:00 • Canada

     

    According to Inuit oral history, long ago animals had the power of speech, could shift their appearances, and could even assume human form. In The Orphan and the Polar Bear, a neglected orphan is adopted by a polar bear elder. Under the bear’s guidance, the little orphan learns the skills he will need to survive and provide for himself.

     

    Neil Christopher is a screenwriter, director and producer. For his authorial film and literary works he uses themes from Inuit myths and legends, which he's dedicated many years to their research. His filmography includes the short animated works Amaqqut Nunaat: The Country of Wolves (2011), The Orphan and the Polar Bear (2013) and The Amautalik (2014). The director is the co-founder of the production company Taqqut Productions.

     

    Tungijuq

    Félix Lajeunesse & Paul Raphaël • 2009 • 7:23 • Canada

     

    A thought-provoking meditation on the seal-hunt and what it means to the traditional way of life for the Inuit. Starring the charismatic Inuit singer-artist, Tanya Tagaq, produced by Zacharias Kunuk, Norman Cohn and Stéphane Rituit, directed by Félix Lajeunesse, Isuma’s first computer-generated video mixes live action and computer animation. Tungijuq is a cinematic and musical expression of the organic and indisputable reality of hunting in Inuit culture.

     

    Winter (Ottawa Premiere)

    Geronimo Inutiq • 2016 • 3:49 • Canada

     

    A story in three parts, and three languages. 

     

    Geronimo Inutiq an accomplished artist specializing in electronic music production, deejaying, as well as digital image and video production. Having been exposed to strong traditional Inuit cultural elements in his youth, as well as the worlds of modern art and broadcast through close members of his kin, his work has been featured and performed in the Museum of Civilization of Quebec; Beat Nation; transmediale and club transmediale festivals in Berlin; Material Experiments at ImagineNative 2015; the ARCTICNOISE project, Contemporary Native Art Biennial in 2016 and Asinabka’s media arts exhibition at Gallery 101, Ottawa. 

     

    Dolastallat - To Have a Campfire (Ottawa premiere)

    Marja Helander • 2016 • 6:00 • Sapmi - Finland

     

    Referencing an old Sámi myth, we find a woman wandering through the mountains in the Kola Peninsula, a landscape marked by the mining industry. Encountering an unexpected friend, she attempts to make a hospitable offer in this dreamlike story commenting on ecology, past and present. 

     

    Marja Helander pursued her interest in photography and graduated from the University of Art and Design in Helsinki in 1999. Since then she has presented works in solo- and group-exhibitions both in Finland and abroad. Helander’s work explores the question of identity with regards to her Sámi background. She works with photography, video and installation.

     

    Aurora Keeps An Eye On You 

    Sara Margrethe Oskal • 2014 • 11:00 • Norway

     

    This brutal and beautiful children's fable succeeds to take us into the world of the tangled up and hurt mind of a big sister, and to show what consequences parental ignorance in a hectic everyday life can have for little brothers.

     

    Sara Margrethe Oskal was born in Kautokeino, in a herding family, but has decided to become a storyteller. She took her MA in acting at the Theatre Academy in Helsinki, her PHD in performing arts at Oslo National Academy of Arts.

     

    Muittut - Memories (Canadian Premiere)

    Niki Rasmus • 2017 • 6:49 • Finland

     

    The music video for the Sami singer Hilda features contemporary music and the “joik”, a form of traditional Sami chanting or singing. 

     

    Stoerre Vaerie - Northern Great Mountain

    Amanda Kernell • 2015 • 16:00 • Sápmi/Sweden

     

    Elle (78) does not like Sámi people - though her first language was Sámi and she grew up in the mountains of Lapland. Now she claims that she is completely Swedish and from the south. Under pressure from her son, she reluctantly returns north for her sister's funeral. As they are about to leave, she understands that her son has planned for them to stay with their relatives over night. Refusing to do so, Elle checks in at the local Grand hotel with all the tourists...

     

    Amanda Kernell was born 1986 in Umeå in the north of Sweden. Her roots are in two cultures due to her Swedish mother and her Sámi father. Since 2006, Kernell has directed several shorts including SEMESTERSYSTERN (The Holiday Sister/ My Summer Holiday Sister) and ATT DELA ALLT (Sharing All).

     

     

    End Notes

    Gallery 101 gratefully acknowledges the City of Ottawa, the Ontario Arts Council (an agency of the Government of Ontario) and the Canada Council for the Arts. Gallery 101 thanks the Asinabka Festival, our members, volunteers, partners, and all our relations.