12" Father & Child by Kelly Etidloie *Paternal Love*

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Kelly Etidloie

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Inuit Art: Father & Child
Artist: Kelly (Kellypalik) Etidloie
Dimensions: 12" high, 6" wide, 6" deep
Community: Cape Dorset, NU
Stone: Serpentine
id: dfa-7149Nafjjy

Museum quality Piece!        

At first glance, this stunning Etidloie carving appeared to be a traditional Mother and Child.

I was studying the exquisite details of the adult's leggings, boots and Amauti (the large hood of the parka in which the baby is placed).

It was obvious that Kelly had chosen to carve the heads of the figures in an abstract fashion.

The heads and necks blend one into another.  The facial features are flat and somewhat cartoonish.

I was looking for any feminine feature that would identify the adult as a woman.  Perhaps a curvaceous torso, or longish hair in a feminine style.


And then I thought, both human figures are androgenous.  They have no distinct male or female features.  Even the clothing could be male or female. 

Suddenly, it came to me.  Perhaps that is the point.  Perhaps Kelly wants us to challenge our assumption that a traditional Inuit carving would naturally depict a mother and child BUT it could depict a father and child.

Could you see this piece as a father and child OR maybe to push it a bit further, Kelly wants to suggest to the viewer that in the modern Far North, the caretaker could be male or female.

On the other hand, the abstract nature of the humans allows us to understand the piece in a manner that is personal and suits only the viewer.

This is a magnificent piece.

It is statuesque, and striking. The love for the child by the adult is palpable.

Kelly Etidloie is hugely talented.  Each of his carvings holds a surprise.  

What have you decided about this piece?


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