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Arnait Video Productions
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Arnait Video Productions (AVP) was founded in Igloolik in 1991, and incorporated around 1999. Originally named Arnait Ikajurtigiit, meaning "Women helping each other" in Inuktitut, and it was also known as the Women’s Video Workshop of Igloolik. The collective has had a loose collaborative model with members taking on various roles over the years. Members over the years have included Madeline Ivalu, Susan Avingaq, Martha Makkar, Mathilda Hanniliaq, Uyarak (Lucy Tulugarjuk) and Marie-Hélène Cousineau. Other women who have been involved in various ways include Mary Kunuk, Atuat Akittirq, Carol Kunnuk, and Alethea Arnaquq-Baril.
Arnait Video Productions' first works revealed the importance for the women of Igloolik to share oral traditions. Whether in the form of a series of interviews (Women/Health/Body and Itivimiut) or as short works linking songs to words and reenactment of traditional activities (Qulliq, Attagutaaluk Starvation, Piujuq and Angutautaq), the videos celebrated the specificity of the culture of women in Igloolik. Their production values reflect the cultural values of the participants: respect for community events, for Elders, for hunting and fishing seasons, for certain traditions belonging to particular families, among others. The members work as a team to write the scenes of each script, to make the costumes and accessories, and to shape the interaction and performances of the actors.
Arnait Video Productions has produced feature documentaries such as Anaana (Mother), Unakuluk (Dear Little One), and the short fiction film Ningiura (Grandmother). Before Tomorrow, based on Danish author Jorn Riel’s novel, was their first feature-length fiction film in 2008, winning the Best Canadian First Feature at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2008 and was selected for the International Competition at the Sundance Film Festival. Their feature documentary, SOL, won the Canadian Screen Award for Best Documentary in 2016.
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