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At tourist shops, airports and hotels across the country, imitations of Inuit art are sold, undermining Inuit artists’ livelihoods. Natan Obed, president of the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami – a national non-profit that advocates for Inuit priorities – is calling for government to consider a legislative response.

Obed, who has served in his role as president since 2015, says thousands upon thousands of tourists have purchased inauthentic pieces in Canada, which they assume to be Inuit art but are often imported from overseas.

Retailers who profit off the sale of these pieces are “making money off of our likenesses, our art, our people, our cultural practices,” says Obed.

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Globe & Mail

Publication Date

May 10, 2024