Monday, November 17, 2008

This may give you a better idea about the size of this bear from Cape Dorset. Kigigtuk Etidloie is the carver of this little one. The dimensions are 3 by 2 by 2. The stone is a wonderful mottled green. Bears are such a wonderful subject for Inuit carvers. Not only are they sometimes depicted whimsically, like dancing, clapping, hand-standing, etc, but also alert, on the prawl. menacing, or mothering their cubs, teaching them to survive, or in shamanic transformations. A great source for many myths and legends.

An absolutely wonderful whalebone carving called "Man Of The Past". This carving has a presence and one almost feels the spirit of man of the past emanating from the sculpture. Looking at it, you can become quite absorbed in thoughts. A bit like a catalyst for meditation. A great carving with a nice transition from the smooth, solid bone towards the more porous "raspy" open cell structure of whale bone. The carving is by Daniel Iqaqrialu from Clyde River and measures 6 inches by 9 inches by 14.5 inches.

A cute little carving by Johnny Luuku from Ivujivik. The dimensions are only 3 x 1 x 1.5 What attracts me to Johnny's little carvings is the green stone he use: it's so alive.

The title of this carving by Kupakik Ningeocheak is Fishman. Kupakik is well known for his transformation carvings: fish, birds, bears and humans. Other similar carvings have titles like Fish-Shaman I am not sure where Kupakik resides as I have two references: Coral Harbor and Rankin Inlet. The tag with this carving actually says Sanikiluaq, so that makes it actually three different locations. However they are all around Hudson Bay, another northern region with many changes happening because of southern expension into the North. Sanikiluaq with a population of around 800 people is located on the Belcher Islands. I like Kupakik's work as it is a testimony to the old traditions with Shamans and transformations.
The carving measures 12 inches by 3.5 inches by 4.5 inches and dates from 1999.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

An old carving from Anowtalik dating from 1974.

Anowtalik is a respected carver from Arviat (Eskimo Point). Carvers from Arviat work primarily with basalt stone, a very hard media to work with, which may explain their unique, almost modern, style with a minimum of lines.

One can find quite a few references to Luke Anowtalik on the web with a google search.

This carving of a sitting Inuk measures
4" x 3.5" x 4.5"

A lovely portrait of Anowtalik can be seen at:

from which is the following quote: "Anowtalik started carving for income in Whale Cove and continued in Arviat. He was considered one the Keewatin region’s great founders of contemporary art."

A very nice sculpture of two ivory narwhals carved out of one tusk. The dimensions are 2.25" x 1.5" x 10" ( dimensions with the narwhals tusk) . The carving originates from Pangnirtung but I do not know who the carver is.

This is a whalebone carving of a hunter with pack by Isa Piungituk from Clyde River. I am not sure about the carver as the information I have gives the name as reproduced above. I do wonder if it is the same person as Regilee Piungituk. Names are not always unique in Inuit culture. there can be variations in spelling and variations in combinations of names. The measurements are 6.5" x 8" x 9" and this carving dates from 1973. What I find attractive about whalebone carvings is the eery sense, or the mystical, spiritual sense that very often goes with a whalebone carving. Maybe it is the bone material, or maybe it is the lack of details, the vagueness of the outlines.
This carving shows nicely the heavy burden that this hunter was under while traveling. The minimal details of he face do give a good sense of the stoic nature of the traveler.