Iñuit Qiñiġaaŋi: Contemporary Inuit Photography

Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum & Arctic Studies Center Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum & Arctic Studies Center

Exhibition: Iñuit Qiñiġaaŋi: Contemporary Inuit Photography



Arctic Museum main galleries
In the spring of 2023, the Arctic Museum will open inaugural exhibitions in our new home, the John and Lile Gibbons Center for Arctic Studies on the Bowdoin College campus. One of the new temporary exhibits planned for this new facility will feature contemporary Inuit photography.

Curated by Iñupiat photographer Brian Adams, with Arctic Museum curatorial staff, this exhibit features photographs of the Arctic taken by five Inuit photographers from Alaska, Canada, and Greenland.

Selected Works

Brian Adams

Brian Adams is based in Anchorage, Alaska, where he specializes in environmental portraiture. His photographs have been featured in both nationa I and i nternationa I publications, and his work documenting Alaskan Native villages has been showcased in galleries across the United States and Europe. In 2018, he received a fellowship grant from the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation and the Rasmuson Foundation to continue his work documenting Inuit life in Alaska and the circumpolar region.

Jenny Irene Miller

Jenny Irene Miller (she/her, they/them), lnupiaq, is from Sitŋasuaq/Nome, Alaska, and now lives and works in Dgheyay Kaq'/Anchorage, Alaska. Most of these photographs are from her ongoing work "Where the tundra meets the ocean," which centers on her family and lnupiaq and queer quotidian moments and memories. She holds an MFA from the University of New Mexico, and a BFA and BA from the University of Washington. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and featured in many publications.

Jennie Williams

Jennie Williams is an lnuk photographer and filmmaker from Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador, Canada. She creates dramatic black and white images of everyday life, with an eye for how diverse groups – children, young adults, and friends and family, adapt Inuit traditions to contemporary life. Pulling on themes such as changing lifestyles, leisure, and landscape, Williams' photographs shed light on the continuity of traditions and the aesthetics of the everyday.

Niore lqalukjuak

Niore lqalukjuak is a photographer, hunter, and community leader in Kangiqtugaapik (Clyde River), Nunavut. His work captures dramatic environmental backdrops in which people and wildlife live. His photographs have been exhibited internationally, and he has used his work to address social issues, including food insecurity and environmental degradation.

Minik Bidstrip

July 3, 2021, marked the 300th anniversary of Hans Egede's arrival in Nuup Kangerlua, Greenland, with the goal of reestablishing contact with Norse settlers who occupied this region from 986 until c. 1400. Egede wanted to convert the Norse from Catholicism to Protestantism. He found no trace of the Norse and instead found Inuit. With permission from the Danish Crown, Egede shifted his focus and began converting Inuit and colonizing Greenland.

With diptychs made from archival images by John Moller, the first Greenlander to work as a photographer (early 1890s through the mid 1920s), and images made by me, I'm having photographic conversations with the past, centered around colonialism and its long-term effects.


For too long, visual storytelling about the north has been dominated by photographers from the south. This exhibit is part of an effort to reverse that longstanding imbalance and to bring the work of northern photographers to the forefront. The exhibit was curated by Iñupiaq photographer Brian Adams and Arctic Museum staff. It features the work of 5 contemporary Inuit photographers who are telling compelling stories through their images.
The museum’s rich photographic collection is a valuable record of an important period of change in the Arctic, but is entirely the work of white, Western, male expedition members. The opening of the new museum is an opportune time to broaden the scope of the collection to include works by a range of northern Indigenous photographers. In addition, the museum seeks to diversify the field of museology and help advance the careers of Inuit photographers and curators. This initiative is a step in those directions.