Discovering Comics with Napatsi Folger

Project Spotlight: An artist talk on text, image and storytelling

Creating Representation Possible Futures
Central photograph of Napatsi Folger with comics panels on either side.

Accompanying the exhibition Pudlo Pudlat: Above the Limits at La Guilde canadienne des métiers d’art in Montreal, QC, artist and Inuit Futures Ilinniaqtuk Napatsi Folger presented a virtual artist talk on comics and the multiple possibilities offered by the juxtaposition of text and image. In the video, Napatsi explains how she came to develop her personal style in comics, introduces the artists who have inspired her work, and explores how she draws from everyday life to create rich subjects that deal with real issues. She also presents the comic strip she created inspired by the work of Pudlo Pudlat, followed by a question period that concludes the talk.

Napatsi Folger is an Inuk comic artist, fiction, non-fiction, and children’s literature writer from Iqaluit, NU. She now lives in Vancouver, BC where she attended UBC to complete an MFA in the Creative Writing Program. Folger is an Associate Editor for Inuit Art Quarterly, where her comics were featured as a limited series in 2020. Folger’s Karoo Ashevak Comic (2021) was featured on the cover and in the Last Look section of the IAQ Storytelling issue in Spring 2021 (34.1). Folger’s written work has appeared in Walrus Magazine, Puritan Magazine, Matrix Magazine, Taddle Creek, Town Crier and Word Hoard. Her first book, Joy of Apex, was published by Inhabit Media in 2011. If you ever meet Napatsi and she looks spaced out, she’s probably imagining you as a stick figure.

Central photograph of Napatsi Folger with comics panels on either side.
Napatsi Folger, comics montage. COURTESY THE ARTIST AND JOHN LEWIS.

Credit: Artist Talk: Discovering Comics | NAPATSI FOLGER was originally published by La Guilde canadienne des métiers d’art on May 7, 2021. COURTESY LA GUILDE.


Contributor biography:

La Guilde canadienne des métiers d’art (the Canadian Guild of Crafts) is a long-time supporter of Inuit art, organizing the first major exhibition of modern Inuit art in 1948. La Guilde is a non-profit organization that houses a permanent collection, archives, an educational program and a public art gallery in downtown Montreal. Inuit Futures in Arts Leadership has partnered with Karine Gaucher, director of programming and communications, and Marie-Héléne Naud, education coordinator and gallery assistant, to provide internships to students from Concordia and elsewhere, working with both their archives and permanent collections as well as their contemporary exhibitions. Inuit Futures and La Guilde have collaborated on multiple projects including Nunatsiavut—Our Beautiful Land (2019) and Pudlo Pudlat: Above the Limits (2021).


This story is part of the Inuit Futures in Arts Leadership: The Pilimmaksarniq/Pijariuqsarniq Project Spotlight. View more content from the Spotlight here.