Who is Sky Hopinka?

Sky Hopinka is a filmmaker and visual artist of Ho-Chunk and Luiseño origin. He is one of the most accomplished and celebrated of the new generation of Indigenous film and video artists.

What characterizes Sky Hopinka's work?

In his moving image, photography and literary work, Sky Hopinka traces the threads that tie together personal interpretations of Indigenous homeland and landscape and the significance of language as a vehicle for cultural expression.

Through the subtle juxtaposition of varied disciplines, Hopinka focuses his gaze on people and places that he visits, inquiring about present and past inhabitants of the area, exploring the notion of what it means to be a guest in the landscapes and scenery which he captures. Ultimately, he draws observers into an intimate embrace with the Indigenous experience.

Where has Sky Hopinka's work been shown?

Hopinka has shown his work at Broadway Gallery in New York, the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, LUMA in Arles, Frye Art Museum in Seattle, Kunsthalle Friart in Fribourg, and numerous film festivals and other art spaces.

His films, videos and photographs are held in collections around the world, including at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt, and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.

What awards and recognitions has Sky Hopinka received?

Hopinka has received accolades from a number of prestigious institutions, including the following: the Tom Berman Award for Most Promising Filmmaker at Ann Arbor Film Festival (2015); a fellowship from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University (2018-19); a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation (2020); a MacArthur Fellowship (2022), colloquially known as a "Genius Grant".

Sky Hopinka, Lore, 2019. Courtesy of the artist.

What is Sky Hopinka working on now?

He currently holds the position of Assistant Professor in the Department of Art, Film, and Visual Studies at Harvard University. Previously, he taught film, video and animation at Bard College in New York and at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia.

Hopinka has also been involved in educating people in Chinuk Wawa, an Indigenous language of the Lower Columbia River Basin. Languages are incredibly important to him and his work, particularly the preservation of linguistic diversity.

Where can I find more information about Sky Hopinka?

More information about Hopinka, including a calendar of upcoming events and exhibitions of his work, can be found on his site. A number of his videos and films are available at Ubuweb.

Read a recent interview with Hopinka published in Latent Images where he explains his approach to art.

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