Inuit art: Walrus
Inuit Artist: Lukie Airut
Size: 13.7" long, 10" high, 9" wide. Weight: 27 lbs
Community: Igloolik, NU
In this intriguingly ambiguous work, Airut brilliantly fuses surface texture and form into this piece. He proves that texture need not be applied simply as decoration or as a "realistic detail". When applied wisely it can become an integral element of the form in itself. The result is an almost heraldic composition.
The tenuous etchings of the skin, the atomic proportions, and the overall exquisite beauty, have endeared Airut's mamal subjects to be celebrated among the avant garde circles of Inuit art. Solo works and publications by him have been adopted and praised worldwide.
Everything about this piece is masterful - the subject matter, the collage of stone elements, the over-exposed greyish stone, the fluidity of movement, and the overall realism of the piece. The skillful detail used to concoct such a masterpiece lends itself to a sense of realism found only in a real walrus from its natural habitat.
I truly admire carvings that come from distant communities in the North like Igoolik. For one, carvings from here are very unique and original from what you would see from other Inuit communities. Secondly, the artists here have a different culture when it comes to carving. Rather than attempting dancing bears or transformations, they strive to make their piece in a traditional manner depicting a sense of realism and natural habitat of the Inuit and animals of the North.
This walrus is very unique but traditional to the Inuit culture. It is a beautiful piece and i did not hesitate for a second when acquiring it.
Lukie Airut (1942 - )
Community: Igloolik (born in Alanarjuk Lake)
Lukie AirutLukie (Luke) is a second generation master Inuit artist, he learned to carve from his father George Kappianaq. Lukie's younger brother, Bart Hanna, is also a well-known Inuit artist. Lukie originally started making sculptures to support his family as there were not many other employment opportunities in the community. Now he is a well established and internationally respected Inuit artist. He works with stone and whale bone. Lukie carves every day except when he he goes hunting and fishing to provide food for the family and community. Often he brings back stone and bone from these hunting trips. Lkie Airut Swimming Bear
Lukie attended Nunavut Arctic College, where he specialized in the fine art of jewellery making. Lukie's sculptures are very detailed and sophisticated, often multidimensional.
The Museum of Inuit Art, Mississauga, ON, Canada
The Winnipeg Art Gallery, Winnipeg, MB, Canada
The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, ON
The University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, ON