Tag Archives: irene avaalaaqiaq

Family Stories Through Wallhangings

10 Feb

A little girl learns how to sew with plastic needles and a foam board.

As a public institution, we are always looking for new ways to really engage with our community and get to know our visitors. We publish Playing Favourites blogs where visitors explain what attracted them to certain works of art, we live Tweet during speaker events and artist demonstrations, we’ve also recorded video interviews so artists can personally interpret their own work and give a first hand account of experiences and motivations.

And while we think we have done a pretty solid job in terms of writing and speaking, this upcoming Family Day is going to emphasize telling a narrative through hand crafted imagery.

Beginning Feb 16th-18th MIA is pleased to host a series of family programming revolving around the exhibit Stories From my Grandmother: Irene Avaalaaqiaq, in order for families to tell their stories through wall hangings.

Facilitated by our fantastic group of Arts Assistants, as part of museum admission visitors will be able to construct wall hangings that represent a favourite trip, fond childhood memory or any other story they feel represents an important family memory. Plastic sewing needles and yarn help make the experience fun and safe for the younger family members and everyone can take the hangings home to proudly share with friends.

To inspire budding artists, we’ll be displaying a few of the wall hangings we have in our collection and complimentary admission lets visitors explore the museum to find our textile exhibition featuring more works by Irene Avaalaaqiaq.

We’re also going to be creating a larger, collaborative textile-based wall hanging that encompasses community involvement and revolves around the theme of community and how family connects us. Individuals can contribute a piece to this wall hanging by cutting out a design from available fabric provided by King Textiles. Staff and volunteers will embroider the pieces onto the wall hanging so you don’t have to worry about threading tiny needles or poking your fingers. (If you’d like to volunteer, be sure to check out our past blog).

This collaborative piece will be on display in the museum throughout Heritage Week (Feb 19-24) and for those who don’t see themselves as  the sewing sort, they’ll be able to write their own comments and reactions next to the piece on our paper covered walls.

So put your thinking caps on, grab some family members and start reminiscing about those good ol’ times! We’ll see you for Family Day fun!

– Posted by Brittany Holliss, MIA’s Visitor Services Officer

Advertisements

Adopt an Object: Amauti

21 Jan
Irene Avaalaaqiaq amouti edited

This amauti by Irene Avaalaaqiaq is part of the MIA’s new Adopt an Object fundraising initiative.

As part of  the MIA’s new fundraising initiative ‘Adopt an Object’, we’ll be highlighting a featured item from our Permanent Collection that staff have chosen to represent some of  the unique pieces we display in the museum. For more information on the program itself and what it means to be a donor, you can check out our past blog post.

Today, we’re highlighting a staff favourite – Irene Avaalaaqiaq’s “Amauti”

Artist: Irene Avaalaaqiaq (b. 1941)
Location: Qamani’tuaq (Baker Lake)
Date: 2009Medium: Wool duffel, thread, glass beads
Dimensions (H x W x D): 44” x 32” x 12”
Collection: MIA Collection

Significance: This amauti is a striking example of clothing that is still worn by women in this community today. Irene Avaalaaqiaq, better known for her wall hangings, is a premier artist in the Kivalliq Region. This beautifully hand-sewn piece with intricate bead work is emblematic of Irene’s exceptional craftsmanship. Textiles, such as this amauti made of duffel felt, often prove to be one of the greatest challenges to safely display without proper environmental controls.

Adoption Rate: $300

UPDATE:  To adopt this piece, contact our curator Alysa at miamuseum [at] gmail [dot] com.

logo

Posted by Brittany Holliss, MIA’s Visitor Services Officer

Playing Favourites: Ryan C., August 11, 2011

11 Aug

Playing Favourites is a running series featuring MIA visitors, staff and volunteers with their favorite objects in our collection.  Playing Favourites is open to every person at MIA, so please let us know if you’d like to participate the next time you visit.

MIA visitor Ryan C. with “Smiling Spirit” (1980) by Irene Avaalaaqiaq (1941 – ), Qamani'tuaq (Baker Lake), Linocut and Stencil, Sprott/ MIA Collection

Where are you from?

Holman, New Mexico, USA

& Ithaca, New York, USA

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

Exploring downtown Toronto and was interested in looking at art from Inuit Tribes.

Posted by: Jessica Cappuccitti, MIA’s Volunteer Coordinator

Playing Favourites: Valeria H., July 31, 2011

4 Aug

Playing Favourites is a running series featuring MIA visitors, staff and volunteers with their favorite objects in our collection.  Playing Favourites is open to every person at MIA, so please let us know if you’d like to participate the next time you visit.

MIA visitor Valeria with "Amouti" (2009) by Irene Avaalaaqiaq (1941 - ), Qamani'tuaq (Baker Lake), fabric, thread, glass beads, Sprott/MIA Collection

Where are you from?

Mexico

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

Touring around Harbourfront.

Why is this your favourite piece in the collection?

This piece was my favourite one because of the similarity with some pieces made by Mexico’s Huicholes who also were one of Mexico’s first inhabtants.  The colours of the beads and the way these were arranged are surprisingly similar and of course, beautiful!

Posted by: Jessica Cappuccitti, MIA’s Volunteer Coordinator

Playing Favourites: Taj and Dafina C., July 17 , 2011

18 Jul

Playing Favourites is a running series featuring MIA visitors, staff and volunteers with their favorite objects in our collection.  Playing Favourites is open to every person at MIA, so please let us know if you’d like to participate the next time you visit.

MIA visitor Taj C. with Untitled (c. 1973) by Malaya Akulukjuk (1915 - 1995), Pangnirtung, pentel marker on paper MIA Collection

Where are you from?

Toronto

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

This is my first visit.  I saw it and my mom asked me if I would like to colour.

Why is this your favourite piece in the collection?

This piece is funny and it is extremely cool and I like weird creatures like that.

MIA visitor Dafina. with "Amouti" (2009) by Irene Avaalaaqiaq (1941 - ), Qamani'tuaq (Baker Lake), fabric, thread, glass beads, Sprott/MIA Collection

Where are you from?

Toronto

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

Yes. Came with my mom and dad to colour

Why is this your favourite piece in the collection?

Pretty beads and colours.

Posted by: Jessica Cappuccitti, MIA’s Volunteer Coordinator

Playing Favourites: Joslyn C., Thea B., Quinn B, and Willa B., June 27, 2011

28 Jun

Playing Favourites is a running series featuring MIA visitors, staff and volunteers with their favorite objects in our collection.  Playing Favourites is open to every person at MIA, so please let us know if you’d like to participate the next time you visit.

MIA visitors Joslyn C ans Thea B with "Transformation" (2010) by Irene Avaalaaqiaq (1941 - ), Qamani'tuaq (Baker Lake), Wood, duffle, cotton, embroidery thread, Private Collection on Loan to MIA

MIA visitor Quinn B next to "Beluga Pack Doll" (c. mid-2000s) by an unidentified artist, Talurjuak (Taoloyak/Spence Bay), Cloth, embroidery thread, fur, hide, duffel, MIA Collection

MIA visitor Willa B with "Doll" (2006) by Margaret Egutak (1928 - ), Ulukhaktok (Holman), Cloth, embroidery thread, fur, hide, MIA Collection

Where are you from?

Pottersville, NJ

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

Yes, this is our first visit; we appreciate Inuit art.

Why is this your favourite piece in the collection?

We’ve lived in Alaska and saw many pieces there and really appreciate it all.

Posted by: Alysa Procida, MIA’s Educational Coordinator

Playing Favourites: Barbara M., June 12, 2011

14 Jun

Playing Favourites is a running series featuring MIA visitors, staff and volunteers with their favorite objects in our collection.  Playing Favourites is open to every person at MIA, so please let us know if you’d like to participate the next time you visit.

Barbara M., MIA Visitor next to "Shaman with Plants" (1981) by Irene Avaalaaqiaq (1941 - ), Qamani'tuaq (Baker Lake), Pencil Crayon, Private Collection on Loan to MIA

Where are you from?

Toronto.

What brings you to MIA? Is this your first visit?

A friend.  Yes this is my first visit.

Why is this your favourite piece in the collection?

This reminds me of  “Where the Wild Things Are.”  Beautiful colouring and shapes.

Posted by: Jessica Cappuccitti, MIA’s Volunteer Coordinator