Our work / Our Living Languages

Our Living Languages

Client:

First Peoples Culture Council and Royal BC Museum

The project:

Together with Nehiyawetan, we developed a suite of interactive and multimedia elements, including a 10-min documentary, an interactive map, 5 short films and more.

Link(s):

UPDATE: We're excited to announce the Royal BC Museum has been honoured with the Excellence in Exhibition Award by the American Alliance of Museums, the largest museum association and advocacy group in the U.S. This award recognizes outstanding public exhibits from all types of non-commercial institutions such as museums or aquariums. A thank you also goes out to Aboriginal filmmaker Loretta Todd, whom we worked on this project with. Check out the press release here:

Our Living Languages is an innovative, interactive exhibition celebrates the resilience and diversity of First Nations languages in BC in the face of change. BC is one of the planet’s most linguistically diverse regions. From a global perspective, it’s known as a linguistic “hotspot” because of the diversity and vitality of our First Nations languages, of which 34 are spoken here.

Agentic helped by producing over 15 different multimedia elements for the show. Working with co-production partner Nihiyawetan Productions, led by noted Aboriginal filmmaker Loretta Todd, we created a 10-minute documentary on the current state of Aboriginal language in BC. Despite the decline of many of the languages,  there is much to celebrate, and we do that through interviews with Barb Harris and her niece Cindy Jansen-Fisk, fierce young Clyde Tallio, and Cree singer/songwriter Art Napolean.

Through interactive stations, original First Nations video, and audio, Our Living Languages provides visitors with the opportunity to learn more about the history of disrupted languages in BC, the complexity of these languages, and the people – and entire communities – that are working tirelessly to document and revitalize them. We were honoured to be part of this.

Language is a powerful, potent marker of identity and culture. One of our centrepieces is the Cradleboard theatre. People sit in a large version of this type of infant-carrier. Over a speaker, visitors can hear recordings of original language of mothers singing and talking to cooing babies. It's a beautiful part of the larger exhibition.

Here's an excerpt:

Here's one more excerpt: