A film by Associate Professor of Art Marek Ranis was screened at the Northern Norway Art Museum in Tromsø, Norway, on January 28. The 45-minute film, Cartographer, is about the life and activism of the Sámi artist and poet Hans Ragnar Mathisen, one of the most significant artists of the Arctic region. The screening was followed by an artist talk with Ranis and Mathisen.
Mathisen has devoted his life, art and literary work to the defense of the indigenous culture and rights of indigenous people. Cartographer addresses how indigenous nations face dramatic changes in the environment while simultaneously striving to preserve their cultures and traditional lifestyles. Mathisen’s borderless maps of the Nordic region (the Sámi homeland, Sápmi) provoke questions about migration, climate change, natural resources, and exploration in the Arctic North.
The screening was offered in conjunction with the 2020 Arctic Frontiers Conference, “The Power of Knowledge,” in which Ranis participated.
Ranis is a multi-media environmental artist, exploring the social, political, and anthropological aspects of climate change through sculpture, installation, painting, photography and video. Since 2002 he has devoted much of his research to the changing Arctic region, with residencies in Iceland, Greenland, and Alaska. In 2016 and 2019, he presented at the Arctic Circle Assembly, held in Reykjavik, Iceland, the largest international gathering to address challenges facing the Arctic.
Cartographer was funded in part by a UNC Charlotte Faculty Research Grant.
Pictured: Cartographer 2019, still image from the film