Bravo! profiles Inuit artist Annie Pootoogook
Annie Pootoogook is a portrait of the third generation Inuit artist as she prepares for a career-defining exhibit at the prestigious Power Plant Gallery in Toronto, the gallery’s first major exhibit dedicated to an Inuit artist. During this 30-minute video diary, Annie describes her creative process, the resulting highly personal pencil crayon drawings dealing directly with alcoholism, abuse and suicide, and her experience as a contemporary female artist living and working in the north. Directed by Marcia Connolly and produced by site(media)inc. in association with Bravo!, Annie Pootoogook premieres April 1 at 8:30pm ET / 5:30pm PT on Bravo!.
“I’m very happy that I can put down on paper what I’m feeling inside or what I have in my head. I cannot draw anything that I myself did not experience,” says Annie, who won the prestigious Sobey Art Award in 2006, Canada’s premier art award for young contemporary artists. “I see and I do.”
Born in Cape Dorset, Nunavut in 1969, Annie’s artistic career began in 1997 when she joined the West Baffin Eskimo Cooperative. As the daughter of artists Napachie and Eegyvudluk Pootoogook and granddaughter of renowned artist, Pitseolak Ashoona, Annie continues her family tradition as an instinctive chronicler of the arctic experience. Traditional and modern images collide as Annie captures her changing culture: a seal hunt on TV; a Nintendo dominating a sparsely furnished room; walrus meat eaten on the floor with a modern kitchen visible in the background.
Atom Egoyan says of Annie Pootoogook, “Marcia Connolly has created an extraordinary documentary on Annie Pootoogook’s work and life. Her camera has found a beautiful way of implicating itself into Pootoogook’s community in Cape Dorset, creating an intimacy and sense of spiritual kinship which is profoundly touching and rare. This is one of the finest portraits of an artist I have ever seen.”
Bravo!, a division of CHUM Television, is a rest stop in the television universe where viewers make a regular appointment with the arts (www.bravo.ca). A proud supporter of the Canadian independent production community, Bravo! funds approximately 100 hours of independently produced documentaries and performing arts specials a year. Bravo! has been a major contributor to such productions as Bathroom Divas, Godiva’s, Detective Murdoch Mysteries and Gemini award-winning Camp Hollywood.
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