Artist of the moment…..Niviaksiak

Niviaksiak was among the greatest Inuit artists of all time. Born in the Cape Dorset, Nunavet Territory, Canada in 1908 the artist was renown for his work with both sculpture and as a printmaker.

His wife was named Kunu and was a renown artist.

One of the most popular Inuit prints of all time is seen at auction below.

From our friends at Waddington’s of Canada we visit a sculpture named SEDNA at auction:

My post on James Houston, the urban city dweller who became tired of city life and went to live with the Inuit peoples and wrote books and a movie about his experience, brought the Inuit some international recognition in 1957.  Niviaksiak was among the first printmakers of the region.

One thing that fascinates me about the Inuit peoples is the hardships of living the nomadic lifestyle such as poor health care and spectacular deaths. I am reminded of Karoo Ashevak who died in a housefire in his thirties. Niviaksiak also had a legendary death. He and a friend went hunting for polar bear. They found a polar bear and Niviaksiak got his rifle ready to fire. He then said ” its dark and I’m falling.” His body was found the next day untouched by the bear.

Niviaksiak passed away in 1959, just two years after Houston started to bring the Inuit art to the world.

price range information:  Niviaksiak was a prolific printmaker and sculptor with works ranging from $2,000 to $36,000.

And lastly we see another popular print by Niviaksiak at auction.

Another variation of the artist’s name is Niviaxie.

Niviaxie was such a spectacular artist that worked in many mediums. Though he died in his fifties and just as the art scene was beginning to blossom for the Inuit people, he provided us with many examples of his skill to enjoy!

D

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