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Cultural Program

Anders Sunna Art Exhibition_edited.jpg
Ailu Valle, photography by Kevin Francet 2.jpeg
Anna Morottaja by Juha Kauppinen.jpg
Áslat Holmberg.jpg

22 March 2023, Wednesday


The Summit will start on 22 March with a presentation of the Sámi visual arts. At 18 pm, the European Parliament will host Sámi Art Exhibition, showing artwork of a famous Sámi artist, Anders Sunna.

Anders Sunna is a Swedish Sámi artist known for incorporating a strong political point of view into his artwork. Sunna was born close to Kiruna, Norrbotten County, Sweden. He grew up in a reindeer herding family in Kieksiäisvaara and was educated at Academy of Fine Arts, Umeå, and the Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design. Nowadays he lives in Jokkmokk, Sweden.

Sunna's art is political, often focusing on Sámi history and his family's life as reindeer herders. In his work, Sunna uses thick layers of color, graffiti techniques, collage, and prints with motifs depicting oppression of the Sámi, including forced relocations and photographs from the Swedish State Institute for Racial Biology.

In addition to painting, Sunna works with larger installations. Some of Sunna's art is on public display at the Gällivare District courthouse, after being purchased by the Swedish Arts Council in 2015. Sunna is one of the artists representing Sámi in the Nordic pavilion during the 59th Venice Biennale in 2022.

The exhibition will be opened by Anni Koivisto, Vice-President of the Sámi Parliament in Finland, and Heidi Hautala, Vice-President of the European Parliament. Opening will be followed by an evening reception.

23 March 2023, Thursday



On 23 March, the Summit will be officially opened by an introduction from Anni Koivisto, followed by the traditional Sámi Yoik by Niko Valkeapää.

Yoik (joik) is the traditional music of the Sámi, and one of the oldest types of folk music in Europe. The music is a carrier of history and identity and plays an important part in conveying both old traditions and modern interpretations of Sámi culture.

Niko Valkeapää (born in Enontekiö, Finland) is a Sámi musician, yoiker (Sami folk singer), teacher, actor and politician. He has been described as "one of Sami music's foremost performers.” Valkeapää has been living in Kautokeino, Norway, since 1990.

In 1994-1995, Niko Valkeapää won the Sámi Grand Prix, and in 2003 he received the Spellemann Award with his debut album and the Liet Ynternasjonaal Award, the international music prize for minority music. He has toured across Norway, including the Nattjazz festival in Bergen, and the Northern Norway music festival Riddu Riđđu in Manndalen. His work has been considered part of the "third wave" of modern Sami music culture.

In 2005, Valkeapää received the Áillohaš Music Award, a Sámi music award conferred by the municipality of Kautokeino and the Kautokeino Sámi Association to honor the significant contributions he has made to the diverse world of Sámi music.  


The official program of the Sámi Summit will be followed by an Evening Dinner Reception with a cultural program.

The Dinner Reception is hosted by the Sámi Parliament of Finland and the Finnish Presidency of the Barents Euro-Arctic Council 2021-2023, main organizers of the Summit. It will be held at Thon Hotel EU (Rue de la Loi/Westraat 75), Ballroom “Belgium” at 18 pm.

The Reception will be opened with Sámi music by Anna Morottaja.

Anna Morottaja, also known as Karhu-Pekan Anna, is an Inari Sámi musician. She comes from Inari on the shores of Lake Muddus, Lapland. Besides practicing music, Anna enjoys fishing, picking berries, doing traditional crafts and teaching Inari Sámi language and culture. In 2012-15, Anna Morottaja was a member of the Sámi Council in Finland, working in the Sámi Language Board.

In the concert of the cultural program of the Summit´s evening reception, Anna Morottaja will perform traditional Inari Sámi livđe. The long tradition of livđe was interrupted until the researcher Marco Jouste in the 2000s found recordings of a performance made in the 1960s in Yle’s (Finnish TV-radio company) archives. Anna Morottaja is known as a revivalist of this musical tradition. Livđe is vocal music, which means Anna is on stage alone with her voice. During Livđe singing, her voice also tends to mimic the sounds of nature. You can hear him quacking like a goose or croaking like a grouse.

At the beginning of 2023, Anna has released the world's first livđe album. It´s called simply Livđe. Among the songs on the album, the main ones are personal livdes about Anna's family and livdes about animals. Some of them will also be heard at this concert.

After the dinner, you will be able to enjoy music by Ailu Valle.

Ailu Valle is a 37-year-old rap artist from Anár, Finnish side of Sápmi, who raps in Northern Sámi, Finnish and English. He has released three solo albums in Northern Sámi, "Dušši dušše duššat" (2012), "7" (2015) and "Viidon sieiddit" (2019). Valle won the Finnish State Culture Prize in 2019, granted by Taike and the Best Songwriter/ Composer prize of the year, granted by Sámi Music Awards and TONO Norway in 2020. Valle is currently working on a collab album with AMOC, who raps in Anár Sámi language. Valle also works as a Northern Sámi voice actor, actor, interpreter, journalist and teacher.

Ailu Valle on Youtube:

Suga suga

Sáhtán ja máhtán

Steehlaž kååvas

24 March 2023, Friday


The concluding day of the Summit will be officially opened by the traditional Sámi Yoik by Aslak Holmberg.

Aslak Holmberg is from Njuorggán, which is situated on the banks of the great river Deatnu, which today forms the border between Finland and Norway. He is a salmon fisher, teacher and holds a master degree in indigenous studies.

He is a former member of the Sámi parliament of Finland. As of 2021, Holmberg is serving as the President of the Sámi Council and works with various processes dealing with indigenous knowledge and rights.

Aslak Holmberg - President of the Sámi Council - will also moderate the third Plenary Session devoted to traditional knowledge and cultural heritage in communities.


Welcome to the Summit of Barents Euro-Arctic Indigenous Sámi People 2023!

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