2023 Inuit Art Society Conference

The Inuit Art Society held its 2023 annual meeting in Brunswick, Maine, September 28-October 1.

slide with information on the 2023 Inuit Art Society Meeting and pictures of Brunswick Maine

Schedule of Events

Thursday, September 28 (Brunswick Hotel and Bowdoin College)

Opening Ceremony/Keynote Address (Kresge Auditorium)

This event is open to IAS members and the general public.

Introductions: Michael Foor-Pessin, IAS President; a representative from the Canadian Consulate; Susan Kaplan, Museum Director, Bowdoin College

Welcome drum dance and song: Inuk performer Jennie Williams

Keynote Address: Dr. Nelson Graburn

Friday, September 29 (Bowdoin Campus)

Friday offered time for members to sightsee on their own when not touring the museum and/or attending the roundtable. But the gallery visit and roundtable discussion were not-to-be missed items.

Gallery Tours (Gibbons Center for Arctic Studies)

Our members will be given gallery tours of the new Gibbons Center for Arctic Studies, which houses the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum. Current exhibits include Iñuit Qiñiġaaŋi: Contemporary Inuit Photography, Collections and Recollections: Objects and the Stories They Tell, and At Home in the North.

photo of a woman entering the new Gibbons Center for Arctic Studies © Cindy Carlsson

The museum exhibits do a nice job of telling the story of both the native Inuit past and present and Arctic explorers with ties to Bowdoin College.

photo of Arctic exhibit in the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum at Bowdoin College in Brunswick Maine © Cindy Carlsson

Of course, most IAS members were mostly interested in the spectacular examples of Inuit art on display!

photo of Inuit art in the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum © Cindy Carlsson

A special photography exhibit included work by Inupiaq photographer Brian Adams and Inuit photographer Jennie Williams, both of whom we would meet during our meeting.


Roundtable photography discussion

A roundtable discussion with several of the Inuit photographers featured in the museum’s exhibition will take place. Curator and Inupiaq photographer Brian Adams will be present. Open to the general public and IAS members.

Saturday, September 30

National Day of Truth and Reconciliation Acknowledgement (Orange Shirt Day)

Jennie Williams will address the importance of the recognition of the day.

The Consul General of Canada’s representative will provide pins to honor the occasion to all members and presenters.

Inuit photographer and performer, Jennie Williams

Williams discussed her life, her photography, and played excerpts of her National Film Board of Canada award-winning short documentary Nalujuk Night.

Inuit curator and visual artist, Krista Ullujuk Zawadski


Virtual Tour to Nunavut

A virtual tour to Nunavut will be led by gallery owner Byran Hellwig (Northerncollectables in Iqaluit) took us on a virtual tour of his gallery Northern Collectables Inuit Art in Iqaluit.

Sculptors Pits Qimirpik (Kimmirut) and Toonoo Sharkey (Kinngait) also joined us virtually, with Billy Gauthier making an unscheduled appearance thanks to the magic of the internet.

Sunday Morning, October 1

Nelson Graburn


“Where are They Now”

A few of our presentators from the past year joined us for a virtual roundtable discussion that covered what they are doing now and other thoughts. Eva Noah, Vera Grundberg, and Drew Ann Wake participated in a lively and far-ranging discussion.

 Closing Remarks