Critical discussions at Arctic Arts Summit 2022

A panel of two woman and three men in a meeting room, the interviewer wears a Sámi dress.

The biannual Arctic Arts Summit was hosted in Whitehorse, Yukon at the end of June 2022. The summit hosted a number of professionals working in the circumpolar culture field, and the three-day-summit included concerts, panels, speeches, theatre, and most importantly, critical discussion. Petra Laiti, grant advisor at Nordic Culture Point, hosted a panel session on Arctic mobility and funding opportunities during the summit. The panel included Eline Wernberg Sigfusson (DK) from A/Nordi/C, Ragnar Siil (EE) from Creativity Lab, Susanne Næss Nielsen (NO) from Davvi Senter for Scenkunst, and Kai Latvalehto (FIN) from Ambassaden residency in Oulu.  

“Very quickly into the planning phase of the discussion, we realized we were there to talk about power. I think even the location of Whitehorse raised plenty of thought in all participants on the themes of accessibility, travel funds, opportunities for underrepresented groups, and Indigenous visibility in particular”, Laiti says. 

The Culture and Art Programme at Nordic culture point will have a special focus on the Arctic in the near future. Although funding for Arctic cultural collaborations can be applied for in any application round of the Culture and Art Programme, in the remaining application round of 2022 and the two rounds in 2023, part of the funding is reserved especially for collaborative art and culture projects in the Arctic. 

“Mobility in the Arctic is such a vast, layered topic. There are no limits to the different dimensions. Arctic mobility – which is more necessary than ever – could be at the forefront of change when it comes to slow travel, sustainable travel, cross-border collaboration and organizational collaboration. Everyone on our panel agreed that making mobility more sustainable for the culture field requires quite a few changes to the ways in which we are communicating and collaborating amongst ourselves, too. It has to be made easier for the grant applicant to combine different kinds of opportunities in service of the climate, but also the social effect of visiting remote communities”, Laiti ponders. 

The next application round for the Culture and Arts Programme opens on the 12th of August 2022.