by Davidialuk Alasua Amittu presented by Galerie Elca London
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Galerie Elca London
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Nunavik Graphics
Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Prints from Arctic Quebec: 1961-1978
March 14 - Apr 7, 2014

This informal exhibition focuses on graphic works from Nunavik (Arctic Quebec) produced during the first two decades of printmaking in the region. Prints from Cape Dorset became popular in the South immediately after their first formal collection in 1959. It was not long before the newly formed Povungnituk Cooperative began to consider producing limited editions. The first "Experimental" Povungnituk prints were produced in 1961 and are quite rare and wonderful with several stylistic similarities to work being produced in Cape Dorset. By the first official collection of 1962, featured at the back of the 1962 Cape Dorset print catalog, there had been a major stylistic shift.

Beginning in 1962 the majority of Povungnituk prints feature the rough outline of the print stone, often incorporated into the image as landscape elements, etc. Povungnituk graphics are very narrative, illustrating details of the daily travails of Inuit life or fascinating legends. While mostly monochromatic, there is a very subtle use of colour in the early images. While exhibition highlights are works by Davidialuk and Joe Talirunili, there are also works by Juanisialu Irqumia as well as a number of wonderful pieces by more obscure Povungnituk artists. It should be noted that one of the reasons that artists from Povungnituk are not better known in the South is the result of poor marketing decisions in the North. Whereas the experimental 1961 images were annotated in English, a decision was made that saw a change to Inuktituk on the 1962 images. As a result, Southern collectors seldom knew the names of the artists or the titles of prints, etc. Even today, identifying many of the Nunavik graphics without a reference library is quite a challenge.

By the early 1970's, other Nunavik settlements began to produce graphics. This exhibition also features works by noted Kuujjuaraapik (Great Whale River) artists Henry Napartuk, Lucy Meeko, & Noah Meeko as well as a wonderful work by Ivujivik's Tivi Etook.


  

Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Katutajuk in the Igloo and Tunituarak Giving Birth to a Little Brother for Her Son, 1975
10 x 16 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Legend Of Lumak, 1975
12 x 18.75 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Story of Aukautik Attacking A Woman, 1977
16 x 18.25 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Man Hitting a Bear, 1975
22 x 28 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Legend of the Giant, 1964
24.5 x 29.75 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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Davidialuk Alasua Amittu
Legend of Lumak, 1964/Legende de Lumak, 1964
19 x 24 in.  Stonecut/Gravure sur pierre
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