Inuit artists Tanya Tagaq (Cambridge Bay) and Laakkuuluk Williamson-Bathory (Iqaluit) performed a provocative and powerful show at the Polaris Prize ceremony, Monday, September 19. The medley of songs, started with 'Retribution', which shifted into an intense cover version of Nirvana's song 'Rape Me' from Tanya's 2017 album Retribution. The juxtapositions and infusions of these songs address issues of sexual and cultural colonization as well as ecological destruction and climate change.
Laakkuuluk joined Tanya, onstage and in the audience, in Greenlandic mask (uaajeerneq) symbolizing the dark presence of satire, fear and overt sexuality.
Towards the end of the performance, the audience began to fill with women attendees wearing red dresses, putting forward a further call for action on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, referencing the Red Dress Project by Indigenous artist Jaime Black. www.theredressproject.org/
Together, Laakkuluk and Tanya bring a powerful experience of Indigenous and Inuit feminist activism to the world stage through daring, confrontational performance.
Have a watch!