Inuit art: Fisherman
Inuit Artist: Uriash Puqiqnak
Size: 15.5" tall, 10" across, 6" deep, 17.8 lbs
Community: Gjoa Haven, NU
Stone: Serpentine, antler, horse hair
When I first encountered this Fisherman by Uriash Puqiqnak, I was immediately drawn to its exotic energy.
Puqiqnak’s works are recognized internationally and have become staples of Canadian art. His carvings are fiery and highly spirited. This fisherman in particular, has that extra "oomph". The stone is intense, and this piece is one of his larger Masterpieces.
This Fisherman proudly holds up his fur bag which contains all his fishing gear. He holds his cutting tool tightly in his right hand. His grotesque face is elongated and with its large flared nostrils, primitive teeth and wild hair he has an equine quality which is strangely enchanting. Enchanting from one point of view but change your vantage point and his face takes on the visage of a monster! The transition from good to evil is startling!
Artists from Gjoa Haven like Puqiqnak, strive to depict their cultural traditions with accuracy but like to temper their message with humour. These pieces from Gjoa Haven are timeless. This could be a first generation carving or a modern sculpture. I love this style for its eternal quality and its sense of humour.
Puqiqnak’s carvings are cherished by collectors who appreciate these strange yet charismatic creatures. This particular piece will no doubt garnish the chronicles of Inuit art magazines and auction house catalogue covers in years to come.
This carving is signed by Puqiqnak and comes with the Igloo Tag of Authenticity.
This carving is signed and comes with the Igloo Tag of Authenticity.
Uriash Puqiqnak (born in 1946)
Uriash Puqiqnak is a master carver and politician. His works are on display in major art museums and galleries. He served as Mayor of Gjoa Haven, Nunavut and was a member of the Nunavut Legislature from 1999 until 2004. Uriash is also a board member for the Nunavut Arts & Crafts Association.
Uriash was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada in 2005 (second highest honour for merit in the system of medals in Canada).
His son Wayne Puqiqnak is also a talented carver.