In April 1961, the Cold War is heating up in Berlin and nuclear bombers are being deployed from bases in Arctic Canada. In Kapuivik, north Baffin Island, Noah Piugattuk and his family live and hunt by dog team as his ancestors did when he was born in 1900. When the white man known as Boss arrives at Piugattuk’s hunting camp, what appears as a chance meeting opens up the prospect of momentous change. Boss is a govern- ment agent assigned to get Piugattuk to move his family to a settlement and send his children to school. But Kapuivik is Piugattuk’s homeland.
ᓄᐊᐱᐅᒑᑦᑑᑉᐅᓪᓗᕆᓚᐅᖅᑕᖓ One Day in the Life of Noah Piugattuk is presented in conjunction with Isuma’s exhibition commissioned by the National Gallery of Canada, on view at the Canadian Pavilion, 58th Venice Biennale, until Nov 24. The complete film is on iTunes at isuma.tv/movies.
Qaggiq: Gathering Place, a related exhibition of work by Isuma co-curated by asinnajaq and Barbara Fisher, is on view Sept 18–Nov 30 at the Art Museum at the University of Toronto. For more information, please visit artmuseum.utoronto.ca.
ᐃᓱᒪ / Isuma (founded in 1990 and based in Igloolik, Canada) is Canada’s first majority Inuit-owned media production company. Known internationally for films written, directed and performed in Inuktitut, including the Caméra d’Or award-winning Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) and One Day in the Life of Noah Piugattuk (2019), ᐃᓱᒪ represented Canada at the 58th Venice Biennale (2019). In 2021, ᐃᓱᒪ started the world’s first Indigenous language television station, Uvagut TV, currently broadcasting 24/7 to over 600,000 homes across Canada.
Learn more about Isuma’s practice by listening to Zacharias Kunuk on episode 6 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.
Small Arms Inspection Building (2019)
Small Arms Inspection Building was originally part of a large munitions plant built in 1940 before it was acquired and renovated as an art centre by the City of Mississauga in 2018. With its female dominated workforce, Small Arms Limited manufactured thousands of rifles daily for the Canadian and Allied forces in WWII. In 1990, the TRCA conducted an environmental audit of the site, revealing the presence of polychlorinated biphenyl, volatile organic compounds, and combustible gases across nineteen acres. More than 70,000 tons of contaminated radioactive soil was removed to eventually transform the Arsenal Lands into a park.
1352 Lakeshore Road East