Fiji Robinson

Fiji Robinson trained in film and television in Ottawa at Carleton University, the Summer Institute of Film and Television, and SAW Video. From there she undertook the Independent Film Producers program at Centennial College in Toronto and worked in the trenches with independent filmmakers, including Jeremy Podeswa and John Greyson. She brings to her filmmaking some 20 years of experience in the realm of communications - research, writing, art direction, project coordination - and has used her strong research and writing skills to examine subjects as diverse as the fall of New France, international Green politics, and the infamous 1953 Jazz at Massey Hall concert.

Fiji Robinson's involvement in film and television developed out of an earlier background in the visual and performing arts: she sang for nine years with the late Peter McGehee in his musical revues, The Quinlan Sisters and The Fabulous Sirs, and her photographs and mixed media works can be found in the collections of the Mendel Art Gallery and The Photographers Gallery in Saskatoon.

RUDECAT PICTURES INC. is Fiji's production company. Rudecat's first production was The Tale of Tortellini (2006) about Saskatoon's Prince of Tortellini, entrepreneur Aniello Marotta, who reveals the story behind one of Italy's most beloved exports. Their next short film, What does Moxy want? (2008), can be seen on YouTube, as can 52 minus 7 equals 45 years of change (2008), her philm-by-phone documentary with former leader of the Green Party of Canada, Chris Lea. Both The Tale of Tortellini and Painted on the Spot can be seen on SCN's 15 Minutes of Fame series.

Artist's Statement
Since my return to Saskatchewan in 2003, I've had the opportunity to learn more about the history of my family. My father's side of the family settled in the Punnichy area in the early years. I knew of Ernie Luthi because my dad spoke fondly of him and because my mother bought a Luthi painting for him, a gorgeous view of the Touchwood Hills that is rich with the reds, oranges, and browns of autumn. And so, on a road trip I made with my cousin Dave and his son Clayton in the summer of 2008, we made it a priority to visit the Dr. Ernest Luthi Heritage Home. We were astounded by the clear passion Ernie had for painting which was reflected in the endless works on display there. He had tried many mediums - oils, pastels, pencil crayon, water colour - and legend has it that he painted on anything he could lay his hands on.

In my earlier work as a photographer, I too was interested in the landscape and it was easy for me to relate to Ernie's work as both an artist and as a documenter. In keeping with Ernie's interest in recording a place in time, I thought that producing Painted on the Spot would help to preserve the memory of this gifted artist who helped others to know and love the landscape of Saskatchewan.

Films by Fiji Robinson