2023 Cape Dorset Inuit Art Calendar
Annually, Dorset Fine Arts (a division of the West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative) produces a calendar to celebrate and feature works from the artists who have worked in the Kinngait Studios. For the 2023 calendar, the selected artists represent multiple generations, whose artwork incorporates traditional Inuit motifs that are re-imagined through a contemporary lens. Utilizing printmaking techniques such as lithography, stonecut and etching, the pop art-like anthropomorphic images reflect these artist’s everyday scenes found in their Artic environment.
In Kinngait (Cape Dorset) water has a particular significance. The hamlet of Kinngait is situated on a small island at the tip of an archipelago surrounded by the sea. The land itself is filled with ponds, small lakes, brooks and streams.
For many generations the Inuit of this region have relied upon water for their survival and well- being. From the sea they hunted fish, seals and whales for nutrition, tools and clothing. The calm waters proved advantageous for travel by kayaks and umiaks in the summer and in the frozen winter dog team and sleds were used to drive over the snow covered terrain. Water was even used as a building material in the form of hard packed snow cut into blocks to make the traditional Igloo dwellings. Water is of such primary importance that some of the greatest myths and legends in Kinngait tell of stories that are set in the mysterious depths of the sea. Sedna, the Goddess of the Sea who holds the marine animals in her hair and releases them only when it pleases her has been a favourite subject of many artists. Water, in its many uses, variations and connections has real meaning for many of the artists, printmakers and staff at Kinngait Studios.
12 in x 14 in
Established in 1959, West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative has enjoyed an international reputation for producing renowned prints, drawings and carvings. The Kinngait Studios in Cape Dorset provides the artists in the co-operative with a state-of-the-art print facility. The studios have the strongest and longest tradition of any community-run, art making co-operative in the Arctic. Due to the stability and longevity of the Co-op’s management, four generations of Inuit artists have developed and sold their art around the world. Today, the Kinngait Studios remain the longest continuous running print studio in Canada.