Taalrumiq | Christina King

Artist Story

Atira Taalrumiq (My name is Taalrumiq).  I work with traditional Inuvialuit design elements and organic materials like sealskin, fur, hide, feathers and antler in combination with modern materials like sequins, beads and metallic leather, to create contemporary Inuit adornment such as jewelry, garments and fine art pieces. Each piece I make is created with the utmost love, care, quality and attention to detail as if I was sewing for my own family.

I feel fortunate to live in a time where I can carry the traditions of my family using my skills not only for survival, but as a form of artistic expression and storytelling. My culture, childhood memories of working on whale or fishing with my mom, the ice, the ocean, animals, midnight sun, the Pingo landscape, our Elders, Ancestors, our drum beats, songs, dances and clothing all inspire me. There is so much beauty to behold that the possibilities to create are endless!

From my earliest memories, I have been interested in everything creative. I come from a long line of talented Inuit women who were expert seamstresses.  Growing up, my siblings, cousins and I frequently spent time in our Anaanak’s (Grandmother’s) sewing room, where the scent of fur and hides was familiar and comforting. My mom was always sewing. When I was 4, she made me my very own sewing kit out of a Pilot Biscuit box filled with needles, thread, and fabric. I was so proud to have my very own sewing kit!

Later on, I learned more technical sewing skills at the University of Alberta, where I earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology and a Bachelor of Education, majoring in Home Economics and minoring in Art.  My plan was to teach afterwards, but I decided to focus on my young family of five. During that time, I sewed for my children, maintaining my skills and practicing new designs. In 2019, I began sharing my work on social media. I’m now happily growing my brand of Inuvialuit art and design: Taalrumiq.

There’s so much creative energy in me that I feel I have no other choice but to create!  My biggest inspiration always remains Inuvialuit people: my family, Ancestors, Elders, and my community members. It’s important for me to share and preserve our stories of survival and resilience through my artwork. I hope to inspire young Inuvialuit and to help them feel empowered, capable, and confident as they move forward.

No matter where I am in the world, I am Inuvialuk. My artwork makes me feel connected to that truth. Creating, viewing, and appreciating art is a necessary part of who we are as Inuvialuit people. We lost so much of our culture, our language, and our identity due to colonization, so it’s important to create pieces that celebrate us, to remember where we come from, who we come from, and what we are capable of. Being able to use my skills as an artist to share our culture or to inspire others to reclaim their identity - I find that to be healing and necessary work. Quyanainni!

Artist Bio: 

Taalrumiq | Christina King is an Inuvialuk Artist & Designer, originally from Tuktuuyaqtuuq, Inuvialuit Settlement Region.  She currently resides on Lheidlii T’enneh traditional territory in BC with her husband, their five young children and dog Munaqsi.

The skills and talent she inherited from her matrilineal line of expert Inuit Seamstresses, combined with a modern education allow a unique opportunity for Taalrumiq to create, teach and share Inuvialuit culture with the world as a form of storytelling and cultural preservation through art and design.  At the same time reclaiming loss of culture, pride in Inuit identity, and healing of intergenerational trauma. 

Always interested in the arts and creative expression, she became a Red Seal Journeyman Hairstylist after high school. Later she graduated from the University of Alberta where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology degree and a Bachelor of Education degree in Secondary Education, majoring in Career & Technology Studies (Home Economics) and minoring in Art.

Taalrumiq’s roots in the North run deep.  She was raised in Tuktoyaktuk with her Inuvialuit family, community and culture, and she is also Teetl’it Gwich’in through her Dad’s side.  Her Jijuu was known for her exquisite sewing and beadwork, as is her Aunt.

Past achievements include an original wood cut Print on the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation’s 2019 Corporate Christmas Card, also in their corporate collection.  She was a top 20 finalist in the Native Women’s Association of Canada’s 2020 National Ribbon Skirt Competition, with a Ribbon skirt titled ‘Arctic Night.’  Her sealskin pandemic mask set titled ‘Inuvialuit Fortitude’ is on tour across Canada with the ‘Breathe.’ Exhibit. Her beaded sealskin walrus tusk mask, titled ‘The Bounty of our Land,’ for the ‘Breathe. 2nd Wave’ Exhibit is scheduled to tour Canada over the next 2 years, you can view it at the Art Gallery of Guelph in Ontario starting in May 2021.  Taalrumiq is currently a Mentor Artist with the Strong People Strong Communities Mural Project on the Healthy Strong Elders Team, with the mural scheduled for completion in Yellowknife in summer 2021. 

Last Updated: May 8, 2022

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