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Norman Cohn (b. 1946, New York) is a video artist and filmmaker, and president and co-founder with Zacharias Kunuk of Kunuk Cohn Productions, Isuma Distribution International and IDI's website IsumaTV. A Canadian citizen since 1981, Cohn lived and worked in Igloolik from 1985-2005. In 1990, as one of the four founding partners of Igloolik Isuma Productions Inc. with Kunuk, elder Pauloosie Qulitalik and the late Paul Apak, Cohn's early video work helped develop Isuma’s signature style of ‘re-lived' cultural drama, combining the authenticity of modern activist video with the ancient art of Inuit storytelling.
Cohn is producer, co-writer and director of photography for the Cannes-winning Atanarjuat The Fast Runner, Nunavut (Our Land) TV series and the rest of Isuma’s collective videography through 2005; and co-director with Kunuk on The Journals of Knud Rasmussen which opened the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival. Cohn led IsumaTV starting in 2007 and was co-Project Leader with Zacharias Kunuk of Digital Indigenous Democracy, the 2012-14 initiative using new media to inform and consult Inuit to improve democratic participation in the Baffinland Iron Mine environmental review. Cohn co-directed with Kunuk the 2014 non-fiction feature, My Father's Land, based on the events surrounding the Baffinland intervention. Before coming to Igloolik Cohn’s solo video exhibition, Norman Cohn: Portraits, opened in 1983 at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Vancouver Art Gallery, National Gallery of Canada, Musee des arts contemporain and 49th Parallel Gallery in NY. Cohn's experimental non-fiction feature, Quartet for Deafblind (1986), was selected for Dokumenta 8 in Kassel, Germany. Winner of a 1990 Guggenheim Fellowship to assist his work with Kunuk in Igloolik, Cohn was co-winner with Kunuk of the 1994 Bell Canada Award for Outstanding Achievement in Video Art. Most recently, Kunuk, Cohn and the 30-year ISUMA media art project have been selected to represent Canada in the 2019 Venice Biennale.See more