LONDON.- The Canada Gallery
is presenting a new exhibition that celebrates vibrant contemporary art from the territory of Nunavut in Canadas Arctic.
Floe Edge: Contemporary Art and Collaborations from Nunavut brings together 18 artists and collaborators to create an exhibition that reflects the culture, spirit and challenges of this unique region.
Every spring, the dark open waters of the Arctic Ocean meet the frozen sea ice along a line called the floe edge, a dynamic ecosystem where sea, animals and humans congregate around floating chunks of sea ice or floes that move with the tide and melt with the changing temperatures.
The floe edge is an apt metaphor for the work of the artists presented in this exhibition, who like the free-moving ice floeshave active practices that integrate personal, cultural, and historical narratives.
In a context where art has been best translated as sanaugait, an Inuktitut word that means things made by hand, it is no wonder that artistic practices are focused on the experience of making.
Pieces in this exhibition include a large-scale, realistic doll crafted of fur; sealskin lingerie and high-fashion shoes; a film that captures temporary paintings on melting, shifting walls of ice; and pieces that employ traditional methods and materials - coupled with a playful charm - to tell contemporary stories of Inuit life.
The artists brought together for this exhibition find power in being more than one thing; in working as an artist and as an office worker, in using new media to represent traditional practices and in using traditional media to represent new forms and new ideas.
They all possess a strong connection to one of the worlds most remote and sparsely populated regions. Yet, it is a region where fully one quarter of all adults 4,000 people are practicing artists.
These artists are at the intersection of current contemporary art practice, at the creative point where art and life melt into each other they are at that point where the open ocean meets the frozen sea they are at the floe edge.