Digitalisation of crafts. Comparative approaches to Arctic fur


  • Gro Ween Cultural History Museum, University of Oslo
  • Nancy Wachowich King’s College, University of Aberdeen



Digital engagements, postcolonial, Arctic, indigenous, fur sewing.


Efforts to digitally engage with indigenous source communities and

craftspeople are many and diverse. This paper has as its starting point a comparison

between two such digital engagements, both celebrations of Arctic animal fur

clothing, yet each at seemingly opposite ends of a continuum of possible digital

interfaces. Skinddragter Online and Mittimatalik Arnait Miqsuqtuit Collective

were both launched the same year, 2015, in Copenhagen and Mittimatalik,

Nunavut, Canada respectively. By comparing each with the other, our ambition is

to illuminate some of the curatorial choices involved in the making of such digital

platforms, and the consequences they have in terms of wider visibility, audiences

reached, knowledge included, and collaborative engagements invited. Postcolonial

critique can come at the expense of general outreach, conversations between

designated experts can be difficult to make equal. Technological sophistication can

be challenged by the digital divide. Attention to issues of cultural appropriation is

a constant. Yet, driving these initiatives is the need to maintain a digital diversity

in online and offline spaces.

Author Biographies

Gro Ween, Cultural History Museum, University of Oslo

D.Phil., Associate Professor, Head of department, Keeper of the Arctic Collections

Nancy Wachowich, King’s College, University of Aberdeen

Ph.D., Lecturer, Department of Anthropology






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