Date: Saturday, May 10, 2014 3:30 PM - Saturday, August 23, 2014 6:00 PM
Location: Scandinavia House
Category: Exhibition

Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People

Photo: Britta Marakatt-Labba - The Crows.Photo: Britta Marakatt-Labba - The Crows

Curated by the Tromsø University Museum and Northern Norway Art Museum, Sámi Stories examines the history, identity, politics, and visual culture of the Sámi, the indigenous people of Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Russia’s Kola Peninsula.

Featuring a selection of contemporary artworks and traditional duodji (handicraft)—including a reindeer milk scoop, shaman's drum, cradle, and a selection of hats and dolls—Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People offers visitors an overview of Sámi history and visual culture from the 17th century to the present.

Link to Scanidinavia House:

The exhibition's eight contemporary artists—Rose-Marie Huuva (SE), Iver Jåks (NO), Britta Marakatt-Labba (SE), Arnold Johansen (NO), Aslaug Juliussen (NO), John Savio (NO), Arvid Sveen (NO), and Marja Helander (FI)—are all of Sámi descent, with the exception of Sveen, and work in a variety of media, including sculpture, video, installation, woodcut print, embroidery, and photography. Installed alongside the historical cultural objects, the contemporary works illustrate the issues, ideas, and narratives that have shaped and continue to shape, the Sámi people and culture.

The exhibition has been organized in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the Norwegian Sámi Parliament and the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian Constitution, which, in 1988, was revised to offer unprecedented formal recognition of the Sámi people, language, and culture.

The exhibition has been curated by Charis Gullickson and Marit Anne Hauan and organized by the Tromsø University Museum, Northern Norway Art Museum, and The American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF).


Photo: Arvid-Sveen - Offertory Rock at Unna Sáiva.Photo: Arvid-Sveen - Offertory Rock at Unna Sáiva

 Exhibition-related Programs

Journeys through Arctic Art and Folk Culture
Exhibition Workshops with Art Educators

Saturdays, 2 – 3:30 pm, April 26 through June 14, 2014 – No workshop on Saturday, May 24, 2014
$12 ($10 ASF Members), Series pass: $68 ($56 ASF Members); Ages 6 – 11
Enrollment is limited; early registration is strongly encouraged

Inspired by the Sámi Stories exhibition and drawing upon the rich art and culture of the Sámi – an indigenous people living in Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia's Kola Peninsula – children will create projects using mixed media, textiles, and natural materials in tandem with stories about Sámi history and folk culture.

Indigenous Expressions and Identity: A Symposium

Saturday, May 10, 3:30 pm
Free, but RVSP encouraged

Sámi Stories opens with an afternoon symposium offering in-depth perspectives on Sámi history, identity, and visual culture. The program features a panel discussion with contemporary artists Britta Marakatt-Labba, Aslaug Juliussen, and Jason Lujan; renowned musician Mari Boine; and curators Charis Gullickson, Northern Norway Art Museum and Marit Anne Hauan, University of Tromsø Museum.

Mari Boine

Tuesday, May 13, 7 pm
$15 ($10 ASF Members)

Brave and distinctive, Mari Boine's soaring voice has defined a new musical language in Norway. Her beguiling talent for weaving other sounds into joik, the traditional music of her native Sámi people, incorporates rich seams of other folk music, jazz, and rock.

Art Afterhours

Tuesdays, 6 – 8 pm, June 3 & July 1, 2014

Come early and stay late! Art Afterhours is a once-monthly art party with extended gallery hours, 6 to 8 pm, featuring music and drinks. Meet up and socialize with other Nordic art fans at Scandinavia House to relish Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People after hours.

Sámi Side of Life: Films from the Far North

Wednesdays @ 7 pm, June 4 through June 18, 2014
$10 ($7 ASF Members)

A cycle of nine films – including feature-length narrative and documentary films, short films, and music videos – dedicated to exploring facets of Sámi identity through artistic means.

Duodji: Sámi Traditional Objects
Lecture by Dr. Thomas DuBois, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Tuesday, June 24, 6:30 pm

Dr. Thomas DuBois introduces some of the basic considerations of form, substance, and use that characterize traditional Sámi objects, showing how, in Sámi art, aesthetic values are inseparable from other considerations such as usefulness, belief, and skill.

Photo: Shaman’s Drum & Mallet. Photo Mari Karlstad.Photo: Shaman’s Drum & Mallet. Photo Mari Karlstad


58 Park Ave
NY 10016 New York
Email: 212.847.9740
Bookmark and Share