Cracks in the Soul 9.9-6.11 2016

“Cracks in the Soul” is an exhibition with the Greenlandic/Danish artist Gukki Nuka (f.1965). He created the works of art on his cell phone and deals with a trauma after being sexually abused as a child.

Gukki Nuka had something on his mind for almost 30 years. The artworks deal with the experience, the emotions and the aftermath from being sexually abused. He chose to show the issues in the most vulnerable and outright way – through himself.

The exhibition consists of a series of self-portraits where the body is an object, a victim, a figure and a human being alike often placed in dreamlike landscapes as forests and ice.

“I use myself as adult not as a 14 year old as I feel the best way to show the pain, the impotence, the anger, the sorrow and also the strength is by telling it through the person I am today. The person that went through hell but survived and grew even stronger.”

Gukki Nuka was sexually abused as a child – at first psychically from 11 to 14 years old – then physically when 14 years. As an artist he is known for his ceramics. It is the first time he shows these pictures even though they have been work in progress for almost ten years. About the exhibition the artist himself says:

“In all the years that I have worked with art I have not worked with subjects related to society. The anxiety of being rejected and mocked has had a heavier impact on me than finding the courage to cry out. In the previous years the anger and the need to help others have taken over until the point where I could not hold all the frustration and impotence back anymore.”

The artworks began when experience and emotions surfaced. The medium at hand was his cell phone and he started taking self-portraits and intensively working on them. He created the art works in the exhibition by drawing with his finger in the cell phone’s drawing program. It began as a way of surviving but was strengthen by a desire to break down the taboo inspired by Henrik Thomsen; a Greenlander who spoke out in public with a similar story and trauma.

Following the exhibition is an educational material aimed at 8th to 10th grade and highschool.

The exhibition in a smaller version is still touring Greenland. Since 2016 it has been exhibited at Nordatlantens Brygge in Copenhagen, Denmark, at the National Gallery of the The Faroe Islands, and throughout Greenland ending its tour in Uummannaq in Nothern Greenland in spring 2019 where Gukki Nuka grew up. A documentary is in process following the exhibition and the artist back to Uummannaq after more than 30 years. For more information about this project contact Laila Lund Altinbass : lala@sermersooq.gl