Artistic diversity of Northern women

Artistic diversity of Northern women

L’association franco-culturelle de Yellowknife plans multi-media exhibition

Nicole Garbutt
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Someone once said, the women of the North are so special and unique they walk on water… frozen lake water, that is.

The Association de franco-culturelle Yellowknife (AFCY) is developing a multi-media exhibition that will showcase just how special and unique the women here are.

“We wanted to do something for the women and to show their immigration North. We almost all come from different places and we wanted to show the diversity of women in the North and celebrate them,” said Pascaline Greau, executive director of the association.

The emerging exhibition, titled Visage au Feminin, is scheduled to launch at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre on March 8.

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Museum Alive! Open House

NWT Residents Honoured at Minister’s Cultural Circle Ceremony

YELLOWKNIFE (October 17, 2012) – Five Northwest Territories residents and organizations were honoured this morning at the second annual Minister’s Cultural Circle Award Ceremony. The event took place in the Great Hall of the Legislative Assembly and was as a way to recognise the important and lasting contributions of those dedicated to the arts and cultures of the North.

“Arts, culture and heritage play an important role in the Northwest Territories,” said the Honourable Jackson Lafferty, Minister of Education, Culture and Employment. “They weave a culturally diverse mosaic of who we are as individuals and as a territory. This year’s recipients pride themselves on making a positive and lasting impact on the lives of countless NWT residents, and I applaud them for their outstanding achievement and passion.”

The Minister’s Cultural Circle provides lasting recognition of those who contribute to the preservation and promotion of culture and heritage in the NWT. It helps build awareness among all northerners about the importance of promoting, protecting, preserving and celebrating our unique culture, heritage and ways of life. An independent panel of judges chose one recipient from each of the four categories, with a fifth recipient receiving the Minister’s Choice Award.

The 2012 Minister’s Cultural Circle recipients are:

  • Doris Taneton from Deline – Youth Category;
  • Lillian Elias from Inuvik – Elder Category;
  • Melaw Nakehk’o from Fort Simpson – Individual Category;
  • Tłı̨chǫ Imbe Program – Group Category; and
  • Jean Harry from Sachs Harbour – Minister’s Choice Award.

More information about each recipient is available below.

2012 Minister’s Cultural Circle Award Recipients:

Spending time with Elders and working with language, traditional knowledge and cultural projects, 23-year-old Doris Taneton is a strong young aboriginal leader. She is fluent in both English and North Slavey, participates in northern governance conferences and dedicates time to working with local projects such as the Deline Knowledge Project.

Reflecting on what it means to practice traditional culture in a contemporary world, Melaw Nakehk’o demonstrates a strong level of commitment and enthusiasm to share her journey of learning the knowledge of her elders. Earlier this year, she set out to learn the art of tanning moosehides and has since been supporting other women wanting to learn the art form, thereby beginning a cultural revitalization movement among the younger generations of the Northwest Territories.

Since retiring from her position as an Inuvialuktun teacher, Lillian Elias has only increased her pride and passion in preserving her language and culture. She continues teaching the language to adults in her community in the evening; she hosts an annual language camp for youth and young children at her bush camp; and she assists the cultural centre, aboriginal languages programs and elementary language teachers with the making of language materials. Her passion is to see all young adults in her community speak Inuvialuktun.

Recognizing that youth were struggling to be “strong like two people” after leaving their communities to attend post-secondary school or employment opportunities, the Tłı̨chǫ Government introduced the Tłı̨chǫ Imbe Program in 2011. This summer employment program hires Tłı̨chǫ youth to spend eleven weeks in their own communities, working with and learning from community Elders, and learning modern safety skills and technology. Youth earn first aid, canoe safety and GPS mapping certification as well as learning traditional skills, such as fishing, drum and paddle making, sewing, hide preparation, traditional medicines and travel routes. The Tłı̨chǫ Imbe Program is the beginning of a successful cultural revitalization in all the Tlicho communities.

As both an artist and an Inuvialuktun language teacher, Jean Harry’s work has profoundly impacted the younger generations of Sachs Harbour residents to continue learning their language. Through her love of her language and culture, she has influenced the development of many leaders, teachers and young Inuvialuit across the North. For all her work in and support of the Inuvialuktun language and culture, Jean Harry receives the Minister’s Choice Award.

For more information contact:

Ashley Green
Public Affairs Officer
Education, Culture and Employment
Phone: (867) 920-3059

Artistic diversity of Northern women

Facing North in different directions

Canada-wide artist collective hosts exhibit featuring Yellowknife artist

Nicole Garbutt
Northern News Services
Published Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012

A country-wide artist collective is hosting a new exhibit at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre and it features a local talent.

Yellowknife printmaker Rae Braden and 10 other Canadian artists will have their work hung on the second level of the museum starting tomorrow.

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Artistic diversity of Northern women

Tremain Collection in the News

Tremain Collection in the News

Woman donates 100-year-old aboriginal items to museum

By Miranda Scotland
Northern News Services
Published Saturday, Aug. 4, 2012

Peering through a glass case at a collection of aboriginal-made goods, tears well in Gwen Tremain Runyard’s eyes as she realizes the items she treasured as a child will be preserved for future generations.

Since 1989 Runyard has donated 12 aboriginal-made items to the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre, including 100-year-old moose hide jackets, moccasins and a porcupine quill belt.

The collection was put on display in June and last month Runyard, who lives in California, came to Yellowknife to see it for the first time.

Read more here »

Museum Alive! Open House

30-Year Old Tłı̨chǫ Drum Songs Released on CD

Yellowknife, NT (July 12, 2012) – Minister of Education, Culture and Employment Jackson Lafferty, will present the first CD copies of drum songs to the Tłįchǫ chiefs at the annual Tłįchǫ Gathering in Wekweètì.

In 1982, Robert Janes, Director of the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre (PWNHC) in cooperation with the Dene Nation and CBC North, contracted anthropologist Ronald Wright to record Dene music. This project was to both preserve a sample of traditional Dene music and share the music with the world. Recorded in Behchoko, the songs have been preserved in the NWT Archives at the PWNHC. PWNHC, CBC North and the Tłįchǫ government worked together to finalize the recordings and produce the CD, Songs of the Tłįchǫ Drum Dance.

“We are extremely excited about this project,” said Minister Lafferty. “Music and celebration are a big part of the foundation of our northern cultures. Some of these songs haven’t been heard or performed in 30 years, and today, they are remastered and produced on a CD to share with other cultures. This is a tremendous gift. The songs are part of our heritage, and we look forward to sharing them with the families and communities of the original musicians, and with the world.”

A celebration with the original anthropologist, Ronald Wright, is planned for the fall at the PWNHC.


Jacqueline McKinnon
Manager | Public Affairs | Education, Culture and Employment
Phone: (867) 920-6222