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Christopher Manson: Living with Diabetes in Moose Factory

March 9 — April 10 2016
Student Gallery, Ryerson Image Centre

As the birthplace of insulin, Canada symbolizes the optimistic side of diabetes but also its continued presence in the world. The seventh leading cause of death in the country, costing up to $9 billion a year, diabetes has become a disabling and deadly disease for many. As with other Canadian First Nation reserves, Moose Factory’s semi-isolated Cree population has Type 2 diabetes at a rate of three to five times higher than the general population.

Positioned just below the Arctic tundra line, surrounded by arctic water on the southern tip of James Bay (an inlet of the larger Hudson Bay), Moose Factory is an island community 850 km north of Toronto – around 200 km north of the nearest main highway. There is no road access to Moose Factory, to get there one must drive from to Cochrane, then catch a whistle stop train to Moosonee (a four to five hour trip), and finally board a helicopter or water taxi.

In 2012, Christopher Manson spent several months in Moose Factory learning about the challenges facing Type 2 diabetics in the region, where historical events and social determinants have given rise to high rates of the disease among the Moose Cree. His work extends the critical debate surrounding the distinct historical, geographical, biological and social factors affecting First Nation health in the remote northern regions of Canada.




Event(s):

Opening Party

Wednesday, March 9
6:00 — 8:00 PM

The top of a tipi peaks out above a wooden fence
Fig. 1

Christopher Manson, Untitled, archival inkjet print, 2012. Courtesy of the artist

Installation Shots

Four photographs, clockwise: a living room, a man leaning on a counter, a man and woman hugging, a dog standing in a doorway
Fig. 1

Christopher Manson: Living with Diabetes in Moose Factory (installation view), 2016 © Larissa Issler, Ryerson Image Centre

A line of identical blue books on individual shelves
Fig. 2

Christopher Manson: Living with Diabetes in Moose Factory (installation view), 2016 © Larissa Issler, Ryerson Image Centre

A book, open to a photo of a man with a ball cap, with text on the right
Fig. 3

Christopher Manson: Living with Diabetes in Moose Factory (installation view), 2016 © Larissa Issler, Ryerson Image Centre