For the first time since 2011, the Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts & Crafts in Panniqtuuq (Pangnirtung), NU, unveiled a new print collection at a launch event on July 8, 2018 as part of the Nunavut Arts Festival in Iqaluit, NU.
This year’s offering features 18 unique works by Eena Angmarlik, Tim Alivaktuk, Leetia Alivaktuk, Elisapee Ishulutaq, CM, May Lonsdale, Jolly Atagoyuk, Joel Maniapik, David Poisey, Andrew Qappik, CM, Annie Naulalik Qappik, Piona Keyuakjuk and Mathewsie Maniapik that range from vast landscapes to intimate scenes. The collection will be available for purchase in late August 2018 and was printed by Eena Angmarlik, Leetia Alivaktuk, Jolly Atagoyuk, Andrew Qappik, Annie Naulalik Qappik and Piona Keyuakjuk.
Speaking on the occasion of the release in Iqaluit, artist Jolly Atagoyuk was optimistic about the future of the program. "It was a bit of a struggle to get here because it's been a long time since we've worked in the studio, but we were all really excited to get back to work," said the artist. "It was a group effort to choose the drawings and to select how the works would be printed, whether etching, stencil or lino cut. I hope this release is successful and I hope that we can do this again."
Established in the late 1960s, the Pangnirtung Print shop released the first annual Pangnirtung Print Collection in 1973 through what is now the Arctic Co-operatives Limited. This inaugural collection was carried in fine art galleries across North America with additional collections released between 1975 and 1980 as well as between 1983 and 1988. While production slowed during the late 1980s, a resurgence of printmaking in Pangnirtung was spurred by the incorporation of the Uqqurmiut Inuit Artists Association in 1988. Replacing the former Pangnirtung Print Collection, the Association relaunched in 1992 and produced an annual collection until 2011.
Eena Angmarlik has been drawing from an early age and began making prints professionally after she took a printmaking course at the Uqqurmiut Center for Arts & Crafts in Pangnirtung in 2010. Angmarlik has worked in a number of media including: stencil, linocut, watercolour, drypoint and etching. Shells and natural landscapes are some of her favoured subjects as she finds inspiration in Pangnirtung’s natural beauty.
Tim Alivaktuk is a printmaker based out of Panniqtuuq, NU. His print Tagging Along (2018) shows an Inuk riding a kayak and looking towards the large ice sheets that make up the background of the image. Another figure lies on the flatbed of the kayak, tagging along for the ride.
Leetia Alivaktuk is a talented printmaker from Panniqtuuq, NU who first presented her work in the 2001 print release. Her print Bowhead Whales Near Pangnirtung (2018) depicts a pod of whales swimming past a rocky beach. The lines of the water flow over and within the whales bodies, seemingly moving together as a unit as they pass by.
Elisapee Ishulutaq, CM has been an active member of the Panniqtuuq art-making program since the late 1960s. Her drawings and prints are included in many private and public collections, including the National Gallery of Canada and the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Long considered to be one of her community’s most prominent artists, she continues to be artistically active always exploring a range of new media and artistic possibilities.
May Lonsdale is a printmaker based in Panniqtuuq, NU whose work often features local fauna and traditional life on the land. Her print Beautiful Owls (2018) depicts two snowy owls leaning head-to-head while staring directly at the viewer. The print is captivating with the birds' delicate and detailed plumage and large bold eyes.
Jolly Attagoyuk works primarily in stencil, linocut and etching, though he has also become known for his woodcuts, silkscreens, watercolours, sculptures, jewelry and film. In addition to interpreting original drawings from the community archives, Jolly creates his own imagery. Animals and spirit creatures are recurring motifs across his many prints.
Joel Maniapik is an artist and printmaker from Panniqtuuq, NU. Maniapik cites his father, local artists and comic books as the influences that led him to his own artistic practice. Maniapik started drawing with pencil before exploring coloured pencil and watercolours. He has taken woodblock printing, watercolour painting, pastel and oil work workshops to expand his practice. Maniapik's work has also been transformed into tapestries and has been published in the Inuit Art Quarterly.
David Poisey is an accomplished videographer and printmaker from Kiviroo, NU who currently resides in Panniqtuuq, NU. In 1991, he directed the film Starting Fire with Gunpowder, and has since worked on multiple films in numerous capacities. Poisey has won many awards and is recognized as a mentor within the film industry and art world for his commitment to sharing Inuit stories.
Andrew Qappik, CM has been actively drawing since the age of eight. A prolific graphic artist and printmaker, his first prints were catalogued at age 14 and first appeared in the Pangnirtung Print Collection 1978. Qappik's work, often featuring multiple perspectives and vibrant colours, results in evocative and resonant images. Other career highlights include his advisory work on the design for Nunavut’s flag and coat of arms as well as his designs for the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. logos.
Annie Naulalik Qappik is a printmaker who resides in Panniqtuuq, NU. Her print Moonlight Over Pang (2018) shows a figure skidooing across a frozen lake at night, pulling a block of ice on a sled behind them as the light off the skidoo mirrors the moon above.
Piona Keyuakjuk spent many hours watching both of his parents carving and drum-making, learning these art forms through observation as a child. Keyuakjuk's prints frequently depict traditional activities and animals, including drum dancers, kayakers, narwhal, seals and even an Arctic hare. Since his debut in the 2010 Pangnirtung print collection, he has contributed a dozen prints that are at times spiritual others humourous and occasionally quite dark.
Mathewsie Maniapik is a printmaker based in Panniqtuuq, NU. His print Piliujartut (Competing Against Each Other) (2018) shows three young Inuit playing together in parkas and full winter clothing. This lighthearted print relays the importance of community and friendship in Inuit culture.