Art and Waste in Panniqtuuq, Nunavut

Art and Media Lab
Special Events
Visual Art
The Art and Media Lab
The Isabel

The Art and Waste in Panniqtuuq exhibition explores the ways Inuit Nunangat is a site where differing understandings, values, and beliefs collide, and dominant Western assumptions marginalize Inuit [and other Indigenous] ways of knowing and being. Inuit have identified waste as a serious environmental, social and health threat. This exhibition interrogates what is deemed 'wastes' in Panniqtuuq, by whom, and who is responsible for the myriad of waste-related issues. A group of Inuit artists have created a body of visual art that unearths personal and collective stories about their lived experience to provide a counter-story to commonly held notions about Inuit and waste.

As an artist, waste researcher, and settler Canadian, micky renders has reversed her scholarly gaze to create an art installation out of Arctic wastes about Arctic wastes. It depicts historical processes and deeply rooted colonialist assumptions she has internalized and benefits from (despite her wish to overcome them), linking these to waste and barriers to Inuit sovereignty and rights to a healthy and safe environment.

This event is part of Listenings - a series of Isabel events dedicated to Indigenous Truth and Reconciliation. 


Artist Opening Celebration

Tuesday, October 24, opening remarks at 6:30 PM
The Isabel's lobby
Register for the Opening Celebration

Artist Talk

featuring Inuit Knowledge Holder Madeleine Qumauqtuq
Wednesday, October 25 at 5:00 PM
The Art and Media Lab
Register for the Artist Talk

Indigenous Talking Circle: Environmental Racism Is Garbage

Thursday, October 26 from 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
The Art and Media Lab
Register for the Indigenous Talking Circle

Artist Workshop

with Oleepika Nashalik and Talia Metuq
Saturday, October 28 from 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM 
at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre
Register for the Artist Workshop


Photo credit: 
1. Shopping the Old Way", a soap stone carving by Malaya Pitsiulak from Pangnirtung, Nunavut, made in 2022 (Photo credit: micky renders). 
2. Photo by David Kilabuk

ᓴᓇᙳᐊᕐᓂᖅ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᓂᑦ ᐸᖕᓂᑑᕐᒥ ᑕᑯᒐᓐᓈᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ
ᓴᓇᙳᐊᕐᓂᖅ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᓂᑦ ᐸᖕᓂᑑᕐᒥ ᑕᑯᒐᓐᓈᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᕿᒥᕐᕈᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᐊᔾᔨᒌᙱᑦᑐᓂᒃ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᓄᓇᖓᓂ ᓇᔪᕐᕕᒋᔭᖅ ᐊᔾᔨᖃᙱᓐᓂᖏᑦ ᐅᑉᐱᕆᔭᐅᔪᑦ, ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔾᔪᑎᒋᔭᐅᔪᓄᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᖃᐅᔨᓴᖅᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᐅᓚᔪᑦ ᓄᓇᕐᔪᐊᒥ ᓴᖅᑭᕙᓪᓕᐊᓂᖏᑦ, ᐊᒻᒪ ᐱᒻᒪᕆᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᐅᓚᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᒐᕙᒪᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᐊᐅᓚᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐃᑉᐱᒋᔭᐅᙱᑦᑐᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ [ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᓯᖏᑦ ᓄᓇᖃᖅᑳᖅᓯᒪᔪᑦ] ᐊᔾᔨᒌᙱᑦᑐᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᑕᐃᒪᐃᓐᓂᖏᓐᓄᑦ. ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᓇᓗᓇᐃᔭᐃᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᐃᑦ  ᐅᖁᒪᐃᑦᑐᑦ ᐊᕙᑎᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ, ᐃᓅᖃᑎᒌᒃᑐᓄᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐋᓐᓂᐊᖃᙱᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᐊᑦᑕᕐᓇᖅᑐᑦ. ᑖᔅᓱᒪ ᑕᑯᒐᓐᓈᖅᑎᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᐱᖅᓲᑎᒋᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᓱᓇᐅᕙᑦ ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᐃᑦ ᐸᖕᓂᖅᑑᒥ, ᑭᒃᑯᓄᑦ, ᐊᒻᒪ ᑭᓇᐅᕙ ᑲᒪᔨᐅᔪᖅ ᓈᓴᒐᒃᓴᐅᙱᑦᑐᓄᑦ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᓄᑦ−ᐊᑦᑐᐊᓂᖃᖅᑐᑦ ᐊᑲᐅᙱᓕᐅᕈᑕᐅᔪᓄᑦ. ᖃᓄᐃᓐᓂᕆᔭᐅᔪᓄᑦ ᑲᑐᔾᔨᖃᑎᒌᒃᑐᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ  ᓴᓇᙳᐊᖅᑎᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᑦᑎᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᐃᓗᓕᖏᑦ ᑕᑯᔅᓴᐅᔪᓄᑦ ᓴᓇᙳᐊᕐᓂᖅ ᖃᐅᔨᓴᕈᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᐅᙱᑦᑐᑦ ᓇᒻᒥᓂᕆᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᑲᑎᖅᓱᖅᑕᐅᔪᓐᓇᖅᑐᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᑦ ᐃᓅᓯᖏᑦ ᐃᓕᓯᒪᓂᖏᓐᓂᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᕈᑕᐅᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᑐᓂᕐᕈᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᐅᔪᓂᒃ ᐅᑉᐱᕆᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐱᔾᔪᑎᒋᓗᒋᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᐃᑦ. ᓴᓇᙳᐊᖅᑎᐅᓗᓂ, ᖃᐅᔨᓴᖅᑎᐅᓗᓂ, ᐊᒻᒪ ᓄᓇᑖᕆᐊᖅᓯᒪᔪᖅ ᑲᓇᑕᒧᑦ, ᒥᑭ ᕆᓐᑐᔅ ᐊᓯᙳᖅᓯᒪᔭᖏᑦ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᕈᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐱᔾᔪᑎᒋᓪᓗᒍ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᓴᓇᙳᐊᕐᓂᒃᑯᑦ ᐃᓕᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᑐᖅᑐᒋᑦ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᒥ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᐃᑦ ᐱᔾᔪᑎᒋᓪᓗᒋᑦ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᒥ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᓄᑦ. ᑕᑯᔅᓴᐅᑎᑦᑎᔪᑦ ᐃᒻᒪᓂᓴᕐᓂᑦ ᐱᒋᐊᕈᑕᐅᔪᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᑦᑐᐊᓂᖃᒻᒪᕆᒃᑐᑦ ᑲᑎᙵᖃᑎᒌᒃᑐᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᐅᔪᓄᑦ ᐅᑉᐱᕆᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᒥᑭᐅᑉ ᐃᒻᒥᒍᑦ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᕈᑎᒋᔭᖏᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐃᑲᔫᓯᐊᖅᓯᒪᔪᑦ (ᖃᓄᐃᒃᑲᓗᐊᖅᐸᑦ ᑭᙴᒪᓂᖏᑦ ᐊᓂᒍᕐᓂᐊᓗᒋᑦ), ᐊᑦᑐᐊᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᑖᒃᑯᓄᖓ ᐊᑦᑕᑯᓄᑦ ᑭᒡᓕᖃᖅᑐᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᑲᓇᑕᒥᐅᑕᐃᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐱᔪᓐᓇᐅᑎᑦ ᐋᓐᓂᐊᖃᙱᓕᕆᓂᒧᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᑦᑕᕐᓇᖅᑕᐃᓕᒪᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᐊᕙᑎᒥ.

The Artists

Oleepika Nashalik is an Inuit artist whose powerful and expressive drawings and paintings contrast aspects of the traditional Inuit way of life with modern ways, reflecting on how the two cultures are bound together through contradicting material and cultural shifts seen in her lifetime, understood in a historical and geopolitical context.

David Kilabuk is a leader in the community and has won several national awards for both citizenship and photography. His patience, skill and sensitivity as a photographer have, for over 25 years, resulted in iconic photographs of contemporary Inuit life and the surrounding natural world, appearing in National Geographic, Canadian Geographic, and other media.

Talia Metuq is an Inuk game developer, an organizer of the Makerspace movement in Nunavut, and the Community Engagement and Special Projects Coordinator at Pinnguaq Association for five years. She studied at Fleming College, VCAD, is on educational leave and enrolled in Indigenous Studies at Trent University. From game player to game designer, she also enjoys making crafts, knitting, and sewing.

Malaya Pitsiulak is the daughter of master carver and artist Lipa Pitsiulak. She learned to carve growing up on the land where she received a traditional Inuit education. Her carving (out of the 200-pound skull of a bowhead whale) is part of the collection at the Qaumajuq Center for Inuit Art at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. She is an excellent marksman and fisher and has the last dog team in Panniqtuuq.

Madeleine Aasivak Qumuatuk is a painter and photographer. A feminist force for Inuit advocacy and wellness coordinator at the Hamlet, she previously served as Acting President of the Nunavut Status of Women Council and is an adviser to Parks Canada on Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (IQ) (traditional Inuit knowledge). Madeleine’s work can be seen at the Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts & Crafts, Pangnirtung, Nunavut.  

micky renders is an artist from Peterborough, Ontario. Her career as an artist, activist, and educator spans over 30 years, for which she has earned national, provincial, and local awards, including the prestigious Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching. Her work explores our place in the world and our relationship to it – understood in its broadest sense. ‘We can no longer have everything we want… but we can be more than we ever imagined. micky’s interdisciplinary research-creation Ph.D. project about Arctic waste was awarded the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Doctoral Prize. micky’s artwork can be found in collections throughout Canada. Her series “Finding Joy,” a suite of 24 paintings were purchased for permanent installation in the Mental Health wing at the Peterborough Regional Health Center.