Winnipeg Art Community Connects With The North In Looking Up


Best of both worlds as local artists gain access to Inuit Art Vault for inspiration

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA – December 20, 2013: The concept behind Looking Up: Contemporary Connections with Inuit Art, began when Curator of Contemporary Art, Paul Butler, selected a diverse group of local artists who have acknowledged Inuit art as an influence on their practices. They were then invited to produce new work in response to pieces from the WAG’s Inuit collection – the largest collection of its kind in the world.

“What has resulted is a connection between two communities with an idiosyncratic history who mythologize, share stories, tell jokes and capture their landscapes through the common language of art” says Paul Butler, Curator of Contemporary. “Looking Up not only ‘looks up’ to the North geographically, but in homage as well.”

Exhibiting artists include Luke Anguhadluq, Shuvinai Ashoona, Irene Avaalaaqiaq Tiktaalaaq, Michael Dumontier and Aganetha Dyck, utilizing a wide variety of mediums including sculptures, wall hangings and sketching. The connection between Inuit art and contemporary Canadian and International art is a link that the WAG is championing through the development of the Inuit Art Centre.

“This exhibition has a particular resonance with the WAG’s place and its future—chiefly its role as a world leader in the exploration, documentation, and presentation of Inuit art”, says Stephen Borys, Director and CEO of the Winnipeg Art Gallery. “Looking Up is a fine example of the WAG’s aspirations to reach to the North and enable this enchanting world to penetrate our lives, our communities, and the very mission of this institution.”

With a fifty-year history of collecting and exhibiting Inuit art, numbering almost 150 exhibitions and 50 catalogues, the WAG continues to explore pathways northward, strengthening the artistic and cultural ties that have given the North a home in our Gallery.

Looking Up: Contemporary Connections with Inuit Art runs from December 21-March 16, 2014.

Members Opening • Fri, Jan 17, 11am–4pm, tour at noon

Public Opening • Free • Fri, Jan 17, 7–10pm

Looking North Family Sunday Program: Sunday, February 2, 1:30-4:00pm, $10 per family Celebrate the Canadian North at the WAG!  Discover and explore the traditions and art practices of artists from Winnipeg to the Arctic.   Enjoy inspiring art workshops and games, immerse yourself in a fascinating multi-channeled film presentation from Iceland, and check out an exciting surprise rooftop installation (don’t forget your parka!) It’s fun for the whole family!

Looking Up is sponsored by Manitoba Hydro. 

The Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate for understanding and experiencing art and art-making, and their vital place in our lives, work and society. As the premiere art museum in Manitoba, the Winnipeg Art Gallery plays a vital role in the community—enriching, inspiring, and engaging people with the world of art.


For information, please contact:
Debra Fehr
Manager, Communications and Marketing

Izzy Goluch
Communications Coordinator



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