Duojár and teacher
Jouni S. Laiti is from Mierasjávri in Ohcejohka valley. At present, he lives in Inari, where he has a workshop (bádji). Most of his life, he has worked in reindeer herding. Jouni S. Laiti has worked as a duojár (Sámi crafter) since 1994.
In his childhood home, making handicrafts was a central part of everyday life. Her mother made reindeer fur shoes and other traditional clothes of reindeer skin and fur. She also made fur shoes for sale. His father made sledges and boats for family’s own use.
He has taken duodji bachelor education in 2011 and duodji master’s degree in 2019 in Sámi University of Applied Sciences in Guovdageaidnu. In addition to that he has a pedagogical education for professional teacher. He has been working as a duodji teacher in the Sámi Education Institute in Anár since 2011. He has also developed hard materials (sá. garraduodji) crafter’s education in the Sámi Education Institute. He has edited a book called Garraduodji about Sámi hard materials craftmanship. The book that was published in 2018 and it is in Northern Sámi language.
Through his studies, Laiti’s work has become more artistic. In his art, Laiti displays both traditional Sámi handicrafts and modern arts and crafts, all made from reindeer horn and the burls found on birches. Jouni S. Laiti’s works have been presented in exhibitions in Sámi museum Siida in Anár, Inari, Mänttä art festival, Institut finlandais in Paris and in Sámi center for contemporary art in Kárášjohka, Norway. The Finnish National Gallery Kiasma has bought Jouni S. Laiti’s artwork. He has also had a photo exhibition in Ohcejohka, Utsjoki.
Jouni S. Laiti is an AIDA duojár archive doner since 2021, but he has also worked as a project’s reference person during AIDA I -project. Jouni S. Laiti’s archive includes his theses and exhibition catalogues and newspaper articles. These articles tell about Jouni S. Laiti’s career as a duojár and artist but also show how duodji is presented in media.