The McMaster Museum of Art

    Media File
    KIAKSHUK
    Date: Inuit, b. Qikiqtaaluk, Baffin Island, 1886 - 1966
    Kiakshuk was born in 1888 in South Baffin Island and died 1966. He was in his 70s when he started drawing in connection with the Cape Dorset printmaking movement. The artist approached printmaking without an awareness of a commercial art maker but with the appreciation for living and hunting. Kiakshuk's graphite pencil drawing demonstrates a wealth of information about traditional experiences among the Inuit.

    Kiakshuk's style consists of showing isolated but energetic figures (which resembles earlier ivory work). His drawing style shows more attention to detail then some of his contemporaries such as Parr. However, his presentation of separate and isolated images is seen as typical of Inuit artists of Kiakshuk's generation.

    Source: Marion E. Jackson & Judith M. Nasby, Contemporary Inuit Drawings, Guelph: MacDonald Stewart Art Centre, 1987, p. 48

    Although he practiced printmaking, Kiakshuk is considered to be one of the most gifted Cape Dorset sculptors. Some of his carved subject matter included imaginative spirits. These carvings were prompted by the acclaim gained fro his drawings.

    "Because Kiakshuk was a very old man, he did real Eskimo drawings. He did it because he grew up that way, and I really liked the way he put the old Eskimo life on paper. I used to see Kiakshuk putting the shamans and spirits into his work on paper." (Pitseolak Ashoona in Eber 1971)

    Source: Hessel, Ingo, et. al. Inuit Art, Douglas & McIntyre, 2003, p. 216

    Research compiled by Mallory Cowell, Humanities student, 2009