This Owl by Tania Qumaluk is one of the most endearing sculptures in this collection. Unusual for a work from Nunavik, the artist has chosen not to create a realistic depiction. Instead she has only suggested the shape of the owl in rounded forms, with the only detail being the feet carved out of the base and the inlaid eyes. The slight tilt of the head lends the owl an inquisitive and whimsical character.
Sculptures from this region, going back to the early days of the contemporary period of Inuit art, have distinctive characteristics in both style and subject matter. Stone across Nunavik varies from a soft ‘soapstone’ that could be polished or left unpolished to a beautiful veined hard stone. Artists tended to add details to their sculptures, either by contrasting polished and unpolished area or by adding antler or ivory to achieve as muchrealism as possible. These realistic works served a narrative purpose; artists wanted toshow all aspects of traditional life.
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