14" Shiny Black Two Way Dancing Bear by Tuk Nuna

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Tuk Nuna

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Inuit art: Dancing Bear
Inuit Artist: Tuk (Taqialuq) Nuna
Size: 14" tall, 8" wide, 5" deep; 14 lbs
Community: Cape Dorset, NU
Stone: Serpentine 
id: dfa-6397Ncjjjy

This monumental work is possibly unique in Nuna's oevre in that it strays from his more medium sized format of dancing bears. Tuk Nuna is just as famous for his depiction of dancing bear as is the likes of other greats like Nuna Parr and Joe Kavik. He has created an impressive body of sculptures depicting bear figures and other animals as well, but it is his affinity with the dancing bear that has captured the imagination of collectors.

This magnificent dancing bear shows Tuk Nuna at his audacious best. His workmanship in the naturalistic portrayal of a bear is excellent, but the truly remarkable aspects of this bear is its concept and its sense of balance of standing on either leg. 

The electrifying black marble stone offer a surreal epiphany of electricity and energy that is rarely seen in other forms of art.

This Dancing bear is less compact than other versions. Instead of compressing the power of the bear, the artist chose to express its energy.

The bear was made to balance on either hind leg. See on its right, the relatively long limbs and next push out into the surrounding space, and the bear's roar is expelled upwards. Regardless of which leg one chooses, the sculpture is perceived a sa five-pointed star shape; this allows our eyes to follow the various flows of energy between neck and / or opposing limbs.

The lines and curves of this piece really give it a strong sense of movement and life which give it a soul of its own.  

For its size, this bear has some good mass to it. This perfectly proportioned bear is beautiful. It is made out of shiny and warm green serpentine stone.. 

Tuk (Taqialuk) Nuna (1958 - )


Tuk Nuna is the son of Cape Dorset artist Sharky Nuna. Taqialuk learned how to carve through observing family and community members. He has since participated in various carving workshops and enjoys learning more about his art medium.

"… Tuk made his first works when he was 8. He became more serious about carving in his late 20's and carves today when he is not out hunting. His rounded comfortable style suits the animal and human subjects that so interest him."*

*quoted from Cape Dorset Sculpture, Douglas & McIntyre, 2005


Tuk Nuna Exhibitions:

2001 Small Sculptures by Great Artists, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

2000 Taqialuk Nuna: The Artist's Hand, Inuit Sculpture Portfolio, Inuit Gallery of Vancouver, Vancouver, BC

1999 Horizons, Inuit Gallery of Vancouver, Vancouver, BC

1998 Sculpture from the Canadian Arctic, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

1997 Singing & Dancing & Playing, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

1997 Three Young Masters: Tuck Nuna, Turaq Ragee, and Toonoo Sharky, Loondance Gallery/Galerie L'envol Du Huart, Mont-Tremblant, QC

1997 itinraire inuit, recontrer un peuple travers son art, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France

1997 Transitions: Contemporary Canadian and Inuit Art, Indian Affairs & Northern Development, Foreign Affairs, & International Trade 

Canada, Paris, France

1996 Small Sculptures by Great Artists V, Feheley Fine Art, Toronto, ON

1995 Keeping Our Stories Alive: An Exhibition of the Art and Crafts from Dene and Inuit of Canada, Institute of American Indian Arts Museum,

Santa Fe, NM

1995 The Birds of Cape Dorset: A Collection of Scultpure by 32 Cape Dorset Carvers, Albers Gallery, San Francisco, CA

1995 Sedna: Spirit of the Sea, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

1995 Canadian Inuit Sculpture, The Next Generation, Orca Aart Gallery, Chicago, IL

1995 Miniaturen, Inuit Galerie, Mannheim, Germany

1994 Small Sculptures by Great Artists III, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

1993 The Theme of Transformation in Inuit Sculpture, The Isaacs/Inuit Gallery, Toronto, ON

1993 Kunstwerke der Inuit, CreARTion, Eppstein, in conjunction with the AGM of Association of Canadian Studies at the Hotel am Badersee, 

Grainau, Germany

1992 Scultpure Inuit, Canadian Guild of Crafts, Montreal, QC

1992 Inuit Sculpture - New Acquisitions, Pucker Gallery, Boston, MA

1992 Arctic Ice: Sculptures in Marble by the Artists of Cape Dorset, NWT, Marion Scott Gallery, Vancouver, BC

1991 The Hand: Images in Inuit Sculpture, The Isaacs/Iqnnuit Gallery, Toronto, ON

1990 This is My World, Jordan Fine Arts, presented at Windmill Gallery, Phoenix, AZ

1990 Small Sculptures from Across the Canadain Arctic, Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, ON

1989 Sculpture Inuit, Canadian Guild of Crafts, Montreal, QC

1984 Sculpture from Cape Dorset - The New Generation, The Innuit Gallery of Eskimo Art, Toronto, ON

1979 Die Kunst aus der Arktis, Inuit Galerie, Mannheim, at the Rathaus Foyer, Mainz, Germany



Inuit Art Centre, Indian and Northern Affairs, Ottawa, ON

Inuit Cultural Institute, Rankin Inlet, NU



1992 Invited to give a demonstation of soapstone carving at the Snow-Goose Annual Mask Show

1988 Participated in the Third Experimental Stone Workshop, Iqaluit Jewellery Centre, Iqaluit, NU

1987 Participated in the Second Experimental Stone Workshop, Iqaluit Jewellery Centre, Iqaluit, NU

2005 Cape Dorset Sculpture FEATURED PAGE 65, 69


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