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Government of Nunavut and WAG promoting Inuit art in Winnipeg

25 May 2016

News Release 

Government of Nunavut and WAG promoting Inuit art in Winnipeg 

Winnipeg, Manitoba, (May 25, 2016) – The Government of Nunavut (GN), through the Nunavut Development Corporation (NDC), is supporting a new retail space in collaboration with the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) to promote and sell Inuit art. Opening on June 25, WAG@The Forks will be located in the Johnston Terminal at The Forks in Winnipeg, Manitoba. 

“The Government of Nunavut is proud to partner with the Winnipeg Art Gallery,” said Nunavut’s Minister of Economic Development and Transportation Monica Ell-Kanayuk. “This retail gallery provides another venue for our talented artists to sell their amazing works. This further encourages Nunavut artists to produce high quality work and market their art across Canada, which allows for greater engagement with Inuit art and culture.” 

The GN will provide the NDC with $75,000 a year for three years to promote Nunavut artists. NDC’s investment will raise awareness of artists, increase art sales, and create more opportunities for Northern artists, further expanding the economic impact of this incredible art form. 

“This three-year initiative will support additional income-earning opportunities for Nunavut artists and business enterprises,” said NDC President Darrin Nichol. 

WAG@The Forks will feature a mix of shopping and art creation. The new retail space will carry the much-loved collection of one-of-a-kind, handmade goods found at the WAG Gallery Shop. Inuit art, as well as First Nations and Métis art, will be presented alongside jewelry, contemporary Canadian crafts and more. 

“Today’s announcement is just one more example of how art and culture are key components of economic development,” states Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG Director & CEO. “By extending the WAG brand to one of Manitoba’s most popular attractions, WAG@The Forks will build new audiences for Inuit art and drive tourism to the North. We are excited to partner with the Government of Nunavut to promote Inuit art and ensure Winnipeg is a gateway to the North.”

The GN and NDC’s support for WAG@The Forks grew out of consultations regarding the Inuit Art Centre and the role the WAG plays in promoting Inuit art and economic development. 

The WAG holds in trust the world’s largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art. With more than 13,000 pieces, the collection represents half of the gallery’s total permanent art collection. The Inuit Art Centre will allow this extensive cultural resource to be shared with people of all ages and backgrounds. 

Visit for the latest updates, follow us on Twitter (@wag_ca), Facebook ( and Instagram (@wag_ca). Follow the Government of Nunavut on Twitter (@GovofNunavut), Facebook (GovofNunavut) or visit You can check out the Nunavut Development Corporation at


Media Contact:

Matthew Illaszewicz 
Manager, Communications 
Economic Development and Transportation 
Government of Nunavut 

Darrin Nichol 
Nunavut Development Corporation 
(867) 645-3170 

Catherine Maksymiuk 
Manager, Media and Marketing 
Winnipeg Art Gallery