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Contemporary Art Gallery

555 Nelson Street
Vancouver, Canada
Admission always free

Today's hours
12 pm - 6 pm
CurrentExhibition
17 Jun 24until5 Jan 25

Kablusiak

Double Feature

CAG Façade and offsite at Yaletown-Roundhouse Station

Kablusiak, Red Ookpik with Harness, 2022. Courtesy of the artist and Norberg Hall.

Inuvialuk artist Kablusiak embraces the wideness of Inuit experience, encompassing in their work joy, despair, sexuality, and, as an Inuk living outside Inuit Nunangat, displacement. Across an agile practice that includes drawing, sculpture, installation, and video, Kablusiak pushes the conventions of modern Inuit art with wit, irreverence and camp.

At the Contemporary Art Gallery, the artist exhibits Double Feature, two bodies of work that wryly comment on the absurdities and rituals of art and culture. Addressing the lofty aspirations associated with “high art,” Kablusiak adapts their trademark doodle figures to spell out a message across CAG’s façade, nested among humorous and heartbreaking depictions of everyday life. At Yaletown-Roundhouse Station, the artist presents large-scale photographs of their mischievous Ookpik sculptures. Looking askance at the handcrafted doll’s fetishistic popularity in the Canadian imagination, Kablusiak draws on the respective intimacies of the mass market and the subcultural, emphasizing a place for both in contemporary Inuit life.

Biography

Kablusiak is a renowned multidisciplinary Inuvialuk artist who creates work in a variety of materials including, but not limited to, soapstone, permanent marker, bed sheets, felt, fur, and words. Their work explores the dis/connections between existence within and without Inuit Nunangat, the impacts of colonization on gender and sexuality expressions, trying to make people laugh, and the everyday. Kablusiak holds a BFA in Drawing from AUArts in Mohkinstsis/Calgary, where they are currently based. In all of their creative work Kablusiak seeks to demystify Inuit art and create space for Inuk-led representations of the diversity of Inuit cultures. Their work can be found in the collections of the Indigenous Art Centre, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Art Gallery of Alberta, Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity, and Global Affairs Visual Art Collection, among others. Kablusiak was awarded the 2023 Sobey Art Award and is represented by Norberg Hall.