A special exhibit at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture in Spokane, Washington, featured The Inuit Art of Povungnituk. A portion of this exhibit was dedicated to Inuit carving.
Museum curator Eva Fognell, in an article in American Indian Art, reports:
“The Arctic cultures have strong aesthetic traditions. For example, carving and incising ivory is an ancient practice among groups throughout the region.”
According to the Museum display:
“Indigenous people of the Arctic have been carving utilitarian objects such as tools, stone kettles and oil lamps for thousands of years, but Inuit people also carve symbolic objects intended for burial use. Contemporary Inuit carvers build on these traditions, working with the materials that their ancestors used—soapstone, ivory, bone and antler. Carving techniques are time tested.”
Shown below are some of the carved objects which were on display.
Shown above is 2 Seals by Lucassie Ekidlak. This argillite stone carving was done in 2012. Shown above is Face by Simon Tookoome (1934-2010). This basalt stone carving was done in 1995. Shown above is Dancing Walrus by James Ragee. This serpentine stone carving was done in 2014. Shown above is Musk Ox by Mathewsie Iyaituk. This stone carving was done in 1989. Another view of Musk Ox. Shown above is Mother and Child by Solomon Pootoogook. This basalt stone carving was done in 2001. Shown above is Bear by Jimmy Kattuk. This argillite stone carving was done in 2014. Shown above is Inuk by Joe Ekidlak. This argillite stone carving was done in 2005. Shown above is Head by Joewillie Echalook. This stone carving was done in 1991. Shown above is Owl Transformation by Willie Onalik. This serpentine stone carving was done in 2013. Shown above is Sled by Charlie Ukaluk, a wood carving done in 2001. Shown above is Men, Igloo and Animals by Johnny Airo. This stone carving on an antler base was done in 1989. Shown above is Hunt Scene with Dog Sled by David Snowball, carved bone on antler base done in 1989. Shown above is Whale by John Annanack. This is carved bone done in 1977. Shown above is Untitled by Johnny Morgan, carved bone done in 1989. Another view of Morgan’s 1989 carving. Shown above is Untitled by Johnny Morgan, carved bone done in 1991.