WINNIPEG – ARTS – Renowned carver Paul Malliki from Naujaat, Nunavut will be in Winnipeg next week for WAG@The Forks’ inaugural Artist-in-Residence Program. Presented by Canadian Arctic Producers (CAP) together with the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) and the Nunavut Arts and Crafts Association (NACA), the program runs September 26 to October 1, and culminates with an exhibition of Malliki’s work from September 30 to October 25. The public is invited to the free opening reception on Friday, September 30, from 4-6pm, as well as a meet and greet with carving demonstrations on Saturday, October 1, from 10am-6pm.
“We are thrilled to welcome Paul Malliki to Winnipeg to launch the Artist-in-Residence Program at WAG@The Forks,” states Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG Director & CEO. “This is an amazing opportunity for the community to meet an outstanding Inuit artist and see him at work. And this is just the beginning, we’ll be highlighting many more talented artists through this partnership with Canadian Artic Producers and the Nunavut Arts and Crafts Association.”
Malliki was born in an outpost camp near the community of Igloolik, Nunavut, and began carving at the age of five. A self-taught artist, he learned by watching others and by studying animals while out hunting. Today the influential sculptor is known for his dramatically posed animals and finely finished human figures. Malliki’s work can be found in private and public collections across North America.
The Artist-in-Residence Program was established to provide a creative environment and a culturally relevant context for Inuit artists in Winnipeg. The program will bring two artists from Nunavut to Winnipeg every year for the next three years. Artists are encouraged to create new works and sales exhibitions as part of their visit.
“CAP and NACA support artistic innovation and excellence in contemporary Inuit art,” states Debbie Jones, Vice President, Art Marketing, CAP and NACA board member. “The WAG residency is designed to be artist-driven and will engage the artistic community, while creating interactive experiences for the public and developing the market place.”
Partnerships such as these are driving the WAG’s Inuit Art Centre initiative. Breaking ground in 2017, the new facility connected to the existing WAG building will be home to the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art in the world. The Centre will be a transformative place led by the images and stories from the art, the people, and the land. One of its programming focuses will facilitate teaching, training, and program sessions with Inuit partners that grow the art sector.
The Malliki exhibition is punctuated by a display of colourful drawings by acclaimed Cape Dorset artist Tim Pitsiulak. From the land and wildlife to modern life, Pitsiulak is influenced by the world around him. The artist’s meticulously detailed work presented alongside that of Malliki will provide a fascinating glimpse of the North.
Both the Artist Reception on Friday, September 30 (4-6pm) and the Meet & Greet on Saturday, October 1 (10am-6pm) are part of the national Culture Days weekend, offering free, interactive, and “behind the scenes” arts and culture activities to the public.
To learn more visit wag.ca/events.