Quvianaqtuk Pudlat (b. 1962) is a graphic artist and sculptor from Kinngait (Cape Dorset), NU . His print Sparring Owls (2017) was recently included in the 2017 Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection. This was the first occasion of Pudlat’s work in the collection .
The print Sparring Owls (2017) depicts two snowy owls in combat, the moment caught in medias res. One owl dives upon the other, who shifts their weight to parry. The composition is dynamic and balances flowing, rounded forms. There is palpable aggression between the two birds without evidence of violence, aside from their fierce expressions. Sparring Owls (2017) was created using the stonecut method, a technique less frequently used by contemporary printmakers as lithography or etching and aquatint. Stonecut prints are created by carving away areas that are not to appear in a print from a block of stone, leaving the uncut raised areas to be inked . The practice is time consuming and requires patience to complete. The amount of detail contained in Sparring Owls (2017) is an impressive feat. Small hatch marks are used to indicate the pattern of the birds’ plumage, emphasizing the faces, talons and flight feathers. The print is evocative of pointillism, the movement of the owls expressed by the distribution of markings. The concentration of marks is used to provide subtle indications of shadow and gives the piece depth. The print was reproduced in black and white, a striking inclusion in the collection.
Pudlat’s work toured with the 2017 Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection to various artistic institutions, including the Winnipeg Art Gallery in Winnipeg, MB . His work was also featured on the cover of the 2017 Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection catalogue .
1. “QUVIANAQTUK PUDLAT 1962-,” Dorset Fine Arts, accessed March 15, 2018. http://www.dorsetfinearts.com/quvianaqtuk-pudlat/.
2. “2017 Annual Print Collection,” Dorset Fine Arts, accessed March 15, 2018. http://www.dorsetfinearts.com/2017/.
3. “Stonecut,” Dorset Fine Arts, accessed March 15, 2018.
4. “2017 Cape Dorset Print Collection,” Winnipeg Art Gallery, accessed March 15, 2018. http://wag.ca/visit/events/specialevents/display,event/1028/2017-cape-dorset-print-collection.
5. “2017 Annual Print Collection,” Dorset Fine Arts, 2018.