Where the River Begins

A film by Takashi Sakurai,
Country: USA,
Duration: 13min,
Language: Iñupiaq,
SubtitlesEnglish,
Year: 2003

Aliitchak, an Iñupiak elder living in the Kobuk River village of Ambler, persists in narrating local history and folktales in her native language.  The film follows Aliitchak’s subsistence activities at summer fish camp and her day-to-day activities in her home village.  Where the River Begins explores the struggle of Kobuk River people to maintain their language and cultural identity in a rapidly changing world.
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A Way of Making Life Beautiful

A film by Katrin Simone-Sakurai,
Country: USA,
Duration: 18min,
LanguageYup’ik , English,
SubtitlesEnglish,
Year: 2007

The Yup’ik people have been beautifying everyday objects and tools for centuries. Today, as a result of globalization and mass media, artistic trends are changing rapidly. Many Yup’ik artists straddle the values of two cultures.  This film explores the question of what it means to be a Yup’ik artist today. 
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The Reindeer Thief

A film by Leonard Kamerling, Sarah Elder,
Country: USA,
Duration: 15min,
Language: English,
Subtitles: N/A,
Year: 1974

Lincoln Pelaasi is an elder from the village of Gambell, St. Lawrence Island.  He tells a mythical story about a man who goes out in search of a reindeer thief. The ensuing encounter becomes a test of supernatural powers and human/animal transformation. Pelaasi’s story is called an ungipaghaq, a tale that has been passed down unchanged through generations and is believed to be based on truth. Like many St. Lawrence Island legends, this story is set in Siberia.
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Ryan Matthews: Basically Me

A film by Leonard Kamerling,
Country: USA,
Duration: 18min,
Language: English,
Subtitles: N/A,
Year: 2014

Ryan Matthews is an accomplished artist with Asperger’s Syndrome. Since childhood, he has been perfecting the expression of his singular subject: TRAINS. Ryan talks about the evolution of his work, how art opened him to the colors of the world, and how it shaped his journey from isolation to a bright future expanding before him.
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A Trip to the White Peoples Jungle

A film by Djesa Rachel,
Country: Norway,
Duration: 12min,
Language: English,
Subtitles: N/A,
Year: 1998

A very personal film-essay made by Rachel Issa Djesa shortly after coming to Tromsø in northern Norway to study visual anthropology. Looking at the new environment from her Cameroonian point of view, she expresses her thoughts and feelings about the place and its inhabitants.

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