Artist Profiles

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Following Artists will be participating in the 2014 Nunavut Arts Festival.

ARTIST

BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

 

 

 

Community: Coral Harbour
Medium: Carving

Lucassie was born on December 28th, 1967 and learned the delicate art of carving when he was a young man. He spent hours watching other carvers in his community and practicing with different materials such as antler, soapstone, bone and granite. Today, Lucassie is a master of his craft and currently works as a full-time artist.

 

 

 

Community: Gjoa Haven
Medium: Carving

Born on October 17th, 1973, Andrew learned how to carve from his father. He works part-time on his art, primarily carving with caribou antler and soapstone. Andrew is inspired by the lives of his parents and elders.

Lavinia Van Heuvelen


Community:
Iqaluit
Medium: Jewellery and Metalwork

Originally from Bowmanville ON, Lavinia has strong connections to Nunavut and a tenacious, life-long interest in the arts. In 2012 she earned national recognition when she received an award for the Bank of Montreal 1st Art Invitational Student Art Competition. In the Great Northern Arts Festival she was awarded the Most Promising Emerging Artist Award in 2013. Lavinia’s love of art stems from her mother Ilisapi who is also an artist.

 

Celina Ningark


Community:
Kuggaruk
Medium: Sewing

Born July 20th, 1945, Celina watched the elders in her community sewing her entire life, and was only 15 years old when she began sewing clothes herself. She is a proud, self-taught artist and is most satisfied when making a brand new pattern or working with an original design. Celina is interested in promoting further art projects in her home community and is inspired by her father who was also an artist.

 


Community:
Taloyoak
Medium: Carving

Simon Oleekatalik born in 1942 near Gjoa Haven, lives in Taloyoak with his wife Nee. He is a self-taught carver who started carving in 1969. He likes to carve human figures with expressive faces and bodies, usually engaged in an activity such as hunting or dancing. He often hollows out the chest area and suspends a heart or bones carved in stone within the open space. To emphasize the activity of the piece, Simon includes implements made from caribou antler, musk ox horn and sinew. Simon is a recognized Elder who participated in the World Wildlife Fund’s “Witness to Climate Change” project.

 


Community: Taloyoak
Medium: Sewing

Koonook learned to sew by watching other women in the community mend and create garments while she was growing up. She attended a seamstress course to expand her sewing skills and continues to be a creative and respected artist and community member today.


Community: Taloyoak
Medium: Sewing, Beading, Crochet

Kidlapik was born in Pond Inlet on March 23rd, 1968 but recently moved to Taloyoak. She learned how to bead and crochet at age 20, but says she is “still learning” all the time. Kidlapik attended a Seal Production Course in 2012, and is inspired by the encouragement she receives from her community.

Hannah Killulark


Community: Baker Lake
Medium: Sewing/Traditional Clothes, Dolls

Hannah was born on January 27th, 1939 in Tipyalik, NU and began making traditional dolls in 1983. She instructed classes in the hamlet elementary and high schools and received an award for her teaching. Hannah’s daughter, Sally is following in her mother’s footsteps by continuing the creative tradition of sewing.

 

 

Community: Gjoa Haven
Medium: Drawing

Over the last decade, Danny has been gaining recognition for his detailed, imaginative scenes, which he typically illustrates using black ink.  He has come to be known for his distinct style; often-circular illustrations, and signature “drum” drawings, whereby he re-defines the meaning of a stretched canvas by drawing directly on the skin of traditional Inuit drums.

 


Community: Gjoa Haven
Medium: Wall Hangings, Sewing, Tapestries

 

Sewing since she was 8 years old, Helen is driven to produce wall hangings, mittens and dolls: when ideas come to her she must sit down and complete the work. When discussing how she never traces out shapes prior to cutting them, Helen states: “My scissors are my pencil. I love sewing.”

 


Community: Kimmirut
Medium: Jewellery/ Metal Work, Sewing

Elisapee first developed an interest in making jewelry because she felt drawn to using different materials from paper to metal to bring her ideas to life.  She works primarily with silver and brass, and enjoys creating brooches, earrings and pendants, as well as more unusual items like bowls and letter-openers.  Recently, Elisapee has also been concentrating on her sewing, but is hoping to go back to school in the Arctic College’s Goldsmith Program.


Community: Gjoa Haven
Medium: Dolls, Wall Hangings

Helen has dabbled in a number of artistic disciplines, from painting to stencils and pottery thanks to courses offered through Rankin’s famous Matchbox Gallery.  Selected as Rankin Inlet’s Artist of the Year in 2012, Helen is continuously gaining recognition for her work.  She describes her desire to create art as going hand-in-hand with a desire to keep Inuit culture alive

 


Community: Pangnirtung
Medium: Print Making

Eena was born outside of Pangnirtung in a camp called Nunataa. She has been drawing from an early age and was able to take her drawing skills to a new level when she took a printmaking course at the Uqqurmiut Center for Arts & Crafts in Pangnirtung in 2010. Eena has worked in a number of media including: stencil, linocut, watercolour, drypoint and etching. Shells and natural landscapes are some of her favoured subjects as she finds inspiration in Pangnirtung’s breath-taking natural beauty. (Biographical details courtesy of Uqqurmiut Center)

 


Community: Iqaluit
Medium: Sewing, Fashion

In 2007, Elisapi was part of the first graduating class of the Arctic College’s two-year Fur Production and Design Program.  Over the years, she has helped develop various cultural skill development programs for the city of Iqaluit, which teach the next generation of Nunavummiut how to make traditional clothing and properly soften skins.  Elisapi is also the Chairperson of the Board for the Nunavut Arts & Crafts Association.

 


Community: Clyde River
Medium: Carving

Lydia, who started carving at the age of 15, stands out amidst Nunavut artists as one of the few female carvers.  Often working in marble or stone, Lydia creates beautifully finished pieces, which vary between animals, people and characters from Inuit folklore.  Her art has been featured in numerous galleries and she continues to gain recognition for her minimalist yet highly evocative works.

 


Community: Kuggaruk
Medium: Carving

Alina’s works are in the classic Pelly Bay style whereby she uses mixed materials that typically incorporate inlays of ivory, whalebone and caribou antler.  She has been carving for many years and explored a wide range of subject matters, from day to day life in the community to the traditional ways of living on the land.  Alina is also a board member for the Nunavut Arts & Crafts Association. 

 


Community: Cambridge Bay
Medium: Sewing

Ann learned to sew when she was a young woman and has been making beautiful work ever since. She learned many different techniques from many different people and incorporates various styles to create unique works of functional art. She is inspired by the pure enjoyment she gets from exercising her creativity.


Community: Cambridge  Bay
Medium: Drawing

Edward’s work reflects careful observation and time spent on the land. He began drawing in his early years of high school and continued learning and observing every time he picked up a pencil. Edward has won community and art and logo contests for his original artwork and is inspired by his brother Philip, the land and his culture.


Community: Cambridge Bay
Medium: Sewing

Naomi’s seamstress skills were passed on to her by her grandmother and in 2010, she began working full-time on her art. Her body of work includes beautiful wall-hangings, mittens and kamiks -- traditional arctic boots. Her grandmother has, and continues to be and inspiration for all of Naomi’s work. Naomi longs to pass the knowledge of traditional sewing on to future generations, just as her grandmother has passed it on to her.

 


Community: Cambridge Bay
Medium: Carving

Noah has been carving, creating and selling his own artwork since the early nineteen seventies. In 1999 he won the Emerging Artist Award in Inuvik. He has also received ample publicity across Canada throughout his career as an artist. Noah is proud that he has created his own livelihood, and among other forms of motivation, is especially inspired by his elders.


Community:
Cambridge Bay

Medium: Carving, Traditional Tools

Roy is a self-taught artist who began making art in the ‘90s. He was inspired by necessity; he needed properly functioning hunting tools so he started making his own. Roy has created many different traditional tools including fishing spears, kayaks, drums and ulus (Inuit women’s knife) just to name a few. 


Community: Pangnirtung
Medium: Carving

Although now calling Pangnirtung home, Piona grew up at Nunatak, an island located in the north part of Cumberland Sound. As a child, Piona spent many hours watching both of his parents carving and drum-making, learning these art forms through observation. Piona has created prints that are available at Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts & Crafts. His favorite carvings encompass traditional activities and animals: drum dancers, kayakers, narwhal, seals, and even Arctic hare. Following the example of his parents, Piona has a traditional carving style and uses solely hand tools to create images from his past.

 

 

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