NAPA - the Nordic Institute in Greenland
NAPA - the Nordic Institute in Greenland, is a cultural institution under the auspices of the Nordic Council of Ministers. NAPA strives to develop, support and stimulate the Greenlandic and Nordic cultural life, with an emphasis on children and youth. Mats Bjerde has been the director of NAPA since january 2014. Much of his focus has in the beginning been on the development of quality-control and transparency of the aims and goals of NAPA and ways to communicate that. He has also focused on initiating small networks in different sectors in the nordic cultural life. This is a way to stimulate and support better practices in similar activities. He has a background in the Swedish people education system (adult education) and in the cultural sector foremost in music. He has been working with many cultural exchange programs in England, Congo, India, Palestine, USA etc.
Daniel Chartier (CA)
Université du Québec à Montréal
Daniel Chartier is full professor at the Université du Québec à Montréal, Research Chair on Images of the North, Winter and the Arctic and director of the International Laboratory for Comparative Multidisciplinary Study of Representations of the North. In recent years, he has published some twenty books and a hundred articles on the representation of the North, the Arctic and Winter, Québec, Inuit and Nordic cultures, cultural pluralism, including The End of Iceland's Innocence (2010), Le lieu du Nord (2015), Le froid (2018) and a multilingual essay in 14 editions (in 14 languages of the North) on What is the ‘Imagined North’? Ethical principles. Over the course of his career, he has led many peer-reviewed projects which led to hundreds of public interventions (books, articles, chapters, interviews, conferences, communications, conference organizations). He has lectured in many universities, including Lund, Paris 3, Paris Sorbonne, Helsinki, Stockholm, Iceland, Greenland, Buenos Aires, Fribourg, Groningen and Yale.
Julie Decker (USA)
Anchorage Museum in Alaska
Julie Decker, PhD, is the Director/CEO of the Anchorage Museum in Alaska, which is a leading center for scholarship, engagement, and investigation of Alaska and the North. Decker’s career has been focused on the people and environment of Northern places and building projects and initiatives that are in service to local and global communities. Before becoming Director/CEO, Decker served as the Museum’s Chief Curator. She has a doctorate in art history, a master’s degree in arts administration, and bachelor degrees in fine arts and journalism. She has curated and designed numerous exhibitions, taught classes, and authored and edited numerous publications on subjects ranging from contemporary art and architecture of the North, to many aspects of the Arctic environment and histories.
Timo Jokela (FI)
University of Lapland
Timo Jokela is Professor of Art Education in the Faculty of Art and Design at the University of Lapland. He is also head of University of Arctic’s thematic network on Arctic sustainable art and design. He was also a visiting professor of Art Education and Environmental Art at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland (2006–2011). He has been responsible for several international and regional action research projects in the field of art education. Jokela works actively as an environmental artist, often using natural materials and the local cultural heritage as a starting point for his works. He has realized several exhibitions, environmental art, and community art projects in Finland and abroad. Jokela has published several articles and books.
Steven Loft (CA)
Director of the Creating Knowing and Sharing: The Arts and Cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples program with the Canada Council for the Arts
Steven Loft is a Mohawk of the Six Nations with Jewish heritage. He is currently the Director of the Creating Knowing and Sharing: The Arts and Cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples program with the Canada Council for the Arts. A curator, scholar, writer and media artist, in 2010 he was named Trudeau National Visiting Fellow at Ryerson University in Toronto. Loft has also held positions as Curator-In-Residence, Indigenous Art at the National Gallery of Canada, Director/Curator of the Urban Shaman Gallery (Winnipeg); Aboriginal Curator at the Art Gallery of Hamilton and Producer and Artistic Director of the Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’ Association (Hamilton). He has curated group and solo exhibitions across Canada and internationally; written extensively for magazines, catalogues and arts publications and lectured widely in Canada and internationally. Loft co-edited the books Transference, Technology, Tradition: Aboriginal Media and New Media Art (Banff Centre Press, 2005) and Coded Territories: Indigenous Pathways in New Media (University of Calgary Press, 2014).
Ragnheiður Skúladóttir (IS)
Iceland Dance Company
Ragnheiður Skúladóttir was born in Reykjavík. She finished her BA in theatre and multimedia at the University of Iowa in 1991 and her MFA at the University of Minnesota in 1996. Following her studies she moved to New York City where she lived and worked until 2000 when after a 13 year stint in the U.S, she moved back to Reykjavík to take on the position of Dean of Department of Performing Arts at then newly founded Iceland Academy of the Arts. Ragnheiður worked at IAA until 2011, initiating new programs in performance making and contemporary dance. In 2008 she co-founded LÓKAL International Theatre Festival, an annual event presenting new local and international work in the field of theatre and performance. She was artistic director of the Akureyri City Theatre 2012 to 2015 and manager of Iceland Dance Company 2016-2019. In August 2019 she will take on the artistic direction of Festspillene i Nord-Norge. Ragnheiður has years of experience as teacher and mentor and has worked with various artists/ groups as a producer.
Maria Utsi (NO)
Arctic Arts Festival
Maria Utsi is the director of the Arctic Arts Festival in Harstad, Norway. With strong profiles of northern arts and culture, the festival annually produces and presents innovative and collaborative projects from all over the high north. Maria Utsi has worked across the Arctic to promote arts and culture as a key factor in the development of the high north. She has a broad network across the Arctic countries, and was a driving force behind the first Arctic Arts Summit, in Harstad, Norway. Utsi is a member of the Norwegian Arts Council. She studied theatre science at the University of Bergen.