The 2022 Arctic Arts Summit Discursive Program: Notes from the Organizing Committee

By Heather Igloriorte, Coordinating Producer, Chair of Programming and Curator of Visual Arts

Tunngasugitsi! We’re so glad you’re joining us at the Arctic Arts Summit.

Early in the planning of this monumental gathering, we decided to focus the discursive programming of the Arctic Arts Summit on making connections, sharing knowledge, and generating conversations across the many geopolitical boundaries and time zones around the Circumpolar world. We, the programming committee—a team of Indigenous peoples, other northerners and arts representatives all participating in the creative and intellectual leadership of the Summit in various ways—wanted to focus on the significance of our gathering from around the North. It has been so long since we’ve had the opportunity to come together like this. After two years of using Zoom, Teams, Skype, Google Meet and other platforms to connect online, we’re overjoyed to see you face-to-face. Acknowledging the eleven-hour time difference between Barrow, Alaska, and Harstad, Finland, for example, we know how challenging it can be to connect, even virtually, around the circumpolar world. We deeply appreciate the lengths that people have gone to, to be here in person.

This is why there are no formal papers, lectures or speeches during our two days of panel programming; we wanted to focus on the generative, dialogical, and importantly, international connections and knowledge-sharing that could only be done in person.

Every country and Indigenous region within Canada has generously agreed to host and moderate at least one of our panel conversations, and all panels include
a diversity of speakers coming from throughout the northern world. The conversations are organized around the main Summit theme, given to us by the Indigenous peoples on whose land we gather— Connections to the Land—and are grouped into important sub-themes such as Activism, Circumpolar Collaboration, Climate, Creating, Indigenous Sovereignty, Land, Possible Futures, and Technology.

We have been looking forward to these exchanges for a long time. Thank you for joining us.