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  6. Voices from Nunavut: Video installation captures life in 26 communities across Nunavut

Voices from Nunavut: Video installation captures life in 26 communities across Nunavut

© Nunatta Sunakkutaangit Museum


The video team of students from John Arnalukjuak High School in Arviat, Nunavut. 

OTTAWA, August 29, 2017—An ambitious one-year video project by Nunavut youth to document life in their communities opens August 30 at the Canadian Museum of Nature. 

Voices from Nunavut, a Canada 150 signature project, was conceived and produced by the Nunatta Sunakkutaangit Museum in Iqaluit, where it debuted in May 2017. The curator and editor combed through 5,800 photos and videos to complete the 27 short videos that appear on iPads in this national travelling exhibition.  

“The inspiration for the project was primarily to share Nunavut with the rest of Canada, which generally doesn’t know very much about the territory. We wanted local youth to show how their lives are similar, yet very different from those of their peers in other parts of Canada,” explains Catherine McGregor, Chair of the Board for the Nunatta Sunakkutaangit Museum.

The videos were created by youth through their school or community group, and they  were asked to document what makes them proud, what makes their community special and what it is like to live in their community. iPads were deployed because of their portability, durability and familiarity for teachers and students.

Every student involved in the project appears in one of the completed videos, which are   presented in all four official languages of Nunavut: Inuktitut, Inuinnaqtun, English and French. Visitors to the exhibition can see ice-fishing in Kugluktuk, learn how to skin a duck from the community of Sanikiluaq, listen to a choir singing “O Canada” in Inuinnaqtun, and much more.

“This Canada 150 travelling exhibition provides a contemporary account of life in Nunavut, and we welcome this firsthand perspective from youth as a complement to our new Canada Goose Arctic Gallery,” says Meg Beckel, President and CEO of the Canadian Museum of Nature.  

The project not only provides a video “time-capsule” of life in Nunavut in 2017, but also allows Nunavut youth to better understand their own territory. “While many students have opportunities to travel to other places in Nunavut, most of these trips are limited to larger or regional communities. Few students, or even adults, have visited many of these communities,” explains McGregor.

After its May debut in Iqaluit, Voices from Nunavut moved to Whitehorse, Yukon, then was shown at the Canada Summer Games in Winnipeg. It closes at the Canadian Museum of Nature October 22, where it will then move to the TIFF Lightbox in Toronto. Funding for Voices from Nunavut was provided by the Department of Canadian Heritage and the Government of Nunavut.

Entry to Voices from Nunavut is included with general admission. The Canadian Museum of Nature is located at 240 McLeod Street, Ottawa. Follow the museum on Twitter (@museumofnature) or on Facebook. For more information, visit nature.ca.


Information for media:
Dan Smythe
Media Relations
Canadian Museum of Nature
613-566-4781; 613-698-9253 (cell)

Laura Sutin
Media Relations
Canadian Museum of Nature
613-698-7142 (cell)