Alutiiq, b. 1976
Slay All Day, 2015
High-definition video with no sound on continuous loop 4:16
Collection of the artist and Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver
Tanya Lukin Linklater
In Tanya Lukin Linklater’s single-channel video Slay All Day, we witness movement in a split format. The left side of the work features a dancer, Toronto-based Ceinwen Gobert, dressed in a white bandeau top and white tutu. On the right side is Gobert again, this time dressed in a black leotard.
Playing with the notion of positive/negative in relationship to balance, Lukin Linklater choreographed the work in collaboration with Gobert. Lukin Linklater drew inspiration from Robert Flaherty’s 1922 film Nanook of the North making note of the ways in which Indigenous peoples were represented in the film, which was made as a documentary but was actually a constructed version of Inuit identity by Flaherty to depict the past. The video (running time 4:16) features no sound, partially alluding to the silent 1922 film. Lukin Linklater references Inuit athletics as a choreographic citation as Gobert progresses through the enclosed room.
Lukin Linklater has studied Alaska Native dance and movement forms for years, which she investigates in this work. While the first half of the work exists in two frames, the latter half of the work shifts to a singular, centralized frame—again featuring Gobert activating the space through movement. This is what Lukin Linklater refers to as “the disavowal of the tutu,” which she goes on to explain is a “reference [to] the containment generally of women in dance and our desires for liberation.”
Tanya Lukin Linklater’s performances in museums, videos, and installations have been shown in Canada and abroad. She often makes performances in relation to the architecture of museums, objects in exhibition, scores, and cultural belongings, reaching toward shifting perspectives and experiences. Her work centers knowledge production in and through orality, conversation, and embodied practices, including dance. Her work has been shown in institutions including the Art Gallery of Ontario, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Images Festival + Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto, the Art Gallery of Alberta, and the Tate Modern. Lukin Linklater studied at University of Alberta and Stanford University, where she received the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship and the Louis Sudler Prize for Excellence in the Creative and Performing Arts. She was awarded the Chalmers Professional Development Grant in 2010 and the K.M. Hunter Artist Award in Literature in 2013. Lukin Linklater is a current doctoral candidate in cultural studies at Queen’s University.