• News

News Roundup: Couzyn van Heuvelen Awarded Artist Prize from the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts

Mar 06, 2024
by IAQ

Couzyn van Heuvelen Awarded $15,000 Prize from the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts

Couzyn van Heuvelen was awarded an Artist Prize from the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts (TFVA) of $15,000. The Inuk sculptor and installation artist from Bowmanville, ON, was one of three award recipients chosen by the Artist Prize committee for their compelling and multi-faceted creative merit. van Heuvelen is known for his conceptual work that explores culture, history and identity through a mix of media. His work has been featured in a number of group and solo exhibitions across Canada, including INUA (2021) at the Winnipeg Art Gallery-Qaumajuq in Manitoba, and the solo exhibition CAMP (2023) at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa, ON. His sculptural work Arctic Char Steaks (2021)—a collection of arctic char steaks constructed from 350-pound steel plates—also graced the cover of the Inuit Art Quarterly’s Fall 2022 issue, Mass. TFVA is a member-based non-profit organization that promotes knowledge of the visual arts to its members, and also provides support and recognition for artists and art organizations in the greater Toronto area. Contemporary artists Isabel Okoro and Shaheer Zazai also won Artist Prizes this year, which are valued at $7,500 each. 


Nina Segalowitz Named Co-Artistic Director of Musical Ensemble Oktoecho

Inuvialuit and Dìne singer and musician Nina Segalowitz has stepped into the role of co-artistic director of the Indigenous (Inuit and First Nations) section of Oktoecho, a Montreal, QC-based musical ensemble. Oktoecho was established in 2001 and creates original music that incorporates Western, Middle Eastern and Indigenous musical styles. Segalowitz, who has collaborated with the group for over 15 years, will co-lead their artistic vision alongside fellow Inuk Lydia Etok, a throat singer from Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik, QC; and Katia Makdissi-Warren, Oktoecho’s principal artistic director. The co-artistic directors describe the new distribution of roles as “a true fusion of ideas and perspectives.” Segalowitz is from Fort Smith, NT, and is a throat singer, hand drum player and accomplished cellist who has performed for over 25 years.


Designs by Taalrumiq/Christina King and Haley Edmunds-Shiwak Featured in New Netflix Series

Designs by Inuvialuk and Gwich’in fashion designer, visual artist and content creator Taalrumiq/Christina King and Nunatsiavut interdisciplinary artist Haley Edmunds-Shiwak are featured in the new live-action Netflix series Avatar: The Last Airbender. Taalrumiq made two sets of appliqué designs and geometric patterns based on ancestral clothing for the series and Edmunds-Shiwak produced beadwork designs; the work of both artists can  be seen in the wardrobe of the Inuit and Yupik-inspired Water Tribe. Edmunds-Shiwak, who is based in Postville, Nunatsiavut, NL, and is an emerging artist, was approached by the show’s producers through her Etsy shop. Taalrumiq has been making art professionally since 2019 and has been featured in a number of print and online publications as well as exhibitions across Canada. When asked by CKLB Radio how it felt to have work featured on TV, Taalrumiq responded: “It was really nice to be asked to be part of this production, to have our work seen on such a huge global production is really exciting and representation is so important.” Avatar: The Last Airbender is available to watch on Netflix. 


Nunavut International Film Festival Marks its Fourth Year

The fourth annual Nunavut International Film Festival hit screens at the Astro Theatre in Iqaluit, NU, last week, running from February 20–25. The festival featured films from across Inuit Nunaat, kicking off with a screening of the TIFF and imaginNATIVE award-winning film Tautuktavuk (What We See) (2023), co-directed by Carol Kunnuk and Lucy Tulugarjuk. Other film screenings included IMAJUIK (2022), a short sci-fi horror directed by Marc Fussing Rosbach; and five films by Lindsay McIntyre, including the drama short Nigiqtuq (The South Wind) (2023), which won a 2023 imaginNATIVE Dramatic Feature Award. Since its launch four years ago, the Nunavut International Film Festival has brought many Inuit-made films to Nunavut, making it an important space for Inuit to showcase their films within their own territory. 


Kablusiak Featured on CBC Radio One Show Q

Kablusiak, who is based in Calgary, AB, recently spoke with Tom Power of the CBC Radio One show Q about the inspirations behind their artistic practice, what it was like to win the $100,000 Sobey Art Award, why humour in art is important, how it feels to take up space in the National Gallery of Canada, and much more. In November 2023, Kablusiak made history as the first Inuvialuk artist to win the Sobey Art Award and the third Inuk, following Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory in 2021 and Annie Pootoogook in 2006. Launched in 2007, Q is a long-standing arts-focused daily radio show where Power, the host, interviews artists, writers, actors and musicians who define pop culture in Canada.

Beatrice Deer Launches New Podcast that Explores Inuit Culture 

Beatrice Deer recently launched a new podcast that explores Inuit culture in her home region of Nunavik and the wider North. The eight-episode series is titled Northerned and explores topics related to art, music and Inuit lifestyle. Deer, an award-winning singer-songwriter and visual artist from Quaqtaq, Nunavik, QC, also shares personal stories from her own life, including experiences in motherhood, while in conversation with guests and co-hosts. The debut episode was released on February 14 and featured a conversation with Deseray Cumberbatch, an Arctic Winter Games veteran and multiple medal-winner from Puvirnituq, Nunavik, QC. Northerned can be found on all podcast streaming platforms.

Suggested Reads

Related Artists