Manitoba, Winnipeg Art Gallery Share Government of Nunavut’s Inuit Art Collection with Europe

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Dec 17, 2015: The Manitoba government and the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) will expand their relationship with France through a special touring exhibition of Inuit art from the WAG collection and the government of Nunavut collection, which is currently on loan to the WAG, Premier Greg Selinger and Dr. Stephen Borys, Director & CEO, WAG announced today.

“Through special partnerships like ours with Nunavut, we can ensure people around the world have a chance to see this incredible art,” said Premier Selinger.  “The Winnipeg Art Gallery is developing a first-of-its-kind Inuit Art Centre that will bring people from around the world to Winnipeg, but while that project develops, this tour will bring the art to the people of France.”

“Inuit art is emblematic of Canada and this exhibition brings the best contemporary work to Europe,” said Borys.  “The WAG is thrilled and proud to partner with Nunavut and France in this endeavor to engage international audiences with our collection of Inuit art, the largest of its kind in the world.”

For many years, Manitoba has had a special relationship with France including a memorandum of understanding with the Normandy region that commits to the sharing of educational and cultural opportunities, the premier said.  The special tour of Inuit art in November 2016 is happening in the context of a partnership the Manitoba government has with the region of Lower-Normandy.

“On behalf of Nunavummiut, I am pleased to share our art and history with Manitoba and Europe through this special exhibition,” said Nunavut Premier Peter Taptuna.  “This art tells the story of our people and our history, and I’m happy to share it on a global stage.”

In November, the Manitoba government announced support of $15 million toward the creation of a unique Inuit Art Centre at the Winnipeg Art Gallery.

“With major attractions like Journey to Churchill, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and Investors Group Field, Manitoba continues to grow as a top-notch tourist destination,” said Premier Selinger.  “This unique Inuit Art Centre will help cement that reputation, creating hundreds of good jobs and protecting these cultural treasures for future generations.”

Manitoba and Nunavut recently renewed an agreement that will see thousands of pieces of Inuit art moved temporarily to the WAG for documentation, study and display.  The centre will significantly build on the engaging and inspiring role the WAG plays in introducing students to art and culture, while creating more opportunities for post-secondary research and bringing national and international attention to this Indigenous art form.

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The Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate using art to connect, inspire, and inform. Playing a dynamic role in the community, we are a place for learning, dialogue, and enjoyment through art. The WAG holds in trust the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art in the world. To celebrate the art and to honour the Inuit, the WAG is building the Inuit Art Centre, the first of its kind. Opening in the coming months, the Centre will bridge Canada’s North and South through exhibitions, research, education, and art making. To learn more visit wag.ca

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