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Haida Modern: The Art & Activism of Robert Davidson

Charles Wilkinson, Director

Winner of 2021 Leo Awards Best Feature Documentary

Haida Modern tells the story of one of the foremost Haida artists, Robert Davidson. Coming from a family of well—known Haida and Tlingit artists, he has been instrumental in the revival of coastal indigenous art and the revitalization of Haida culture. He is regarded as one of the greatest living artists in the world. The film “features candid and revealing conversations with the artist himself, along with commentary from art historians, politicians, musicians, and family members detailing the importance and impact of Davidson's work. Highlighted in these conversations is the story of how Davidson carved the first totem pole raised on the island of Haida Gwaii in over 100 years … In Haida Modern, we see how Indigenous and non-Indigenous citizens alike—inspired by Davidson's art—are coming together to forge political movements led by Indigenous activists and artists, fighting the critical environmental battles of our time.” (Bullfrog Films)

Released in 2020

Running time: 85 minutes

FHFF Film Category: Tales from the Heart

FHFF Film Sponsor: Artic Raven Gallery


Friday, October 21 - 1:15 PM

Saturday, October 22 - 4:15 PM


A Q&A with Director Charles Wilkinson will begin directly following each screening.

ONLINE SCREENINGS: On-Demand October 24 - 30 on with a recorded Q&A from the in-theatre screening.

photo: a still from HAIDA MODERN


Director Charles Wilkinson

Charles Wilkinson is a Canadian filmmaker with a large body of documentary and dramatic film and television to his credit. Wilkinson’s latest multi-award-winning feature documentary Haida Modern: The Art and Activism of Robert Davidson has been selected at numerous international festivals as well as being chosen as the official opening and closing films of several. The film is currently in broadcast and distribution in both Canada and the US.

His critically acclaimed Haida Gwaii: On The Edge Of The World won Most Popular Canadian Documentary at Vancouver International Film Festival, National Film Critics Best Documentary, the Director’s Guild Allan King Award for Excellence in Documentary, and Best Canadian Documentary at Hot Docs.

Wilkinson’s other recent feature documentary work includes Vancouver: No Fixed Address, Oil Sands Karaoke, and Peace Out. Having started out in documentary and prior to returning with this suite of long forms, Wilkinson spent time writing and directing dramatic feature films, TV movies, and episodic shows for Canadian screens as well as for Disney, ABC & CBS in the USA.

Charles was born in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies. He became a well-known country singer/TV performer/recording artist in his youth. He 'dropped out' for a decade to build a log house in the mountains, and worked logging, mechanical, building, and welding before attending film school, receiving several post-graduate degrees, and launching his career as an author & filmmaker. Charles lives with his family on a Pacific inlet near Vancouver.


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