In Winter time when it was very cold and stormy outside Inuit life mostly took place inside the dwelling. Women cooked, sewn clothes and looked after the kids while men made hunting tools, pots and if time allowed created ‘nice things’. The elders enjoyed staying with the children and taught them about Inuit life by telling stories. Sometimes – no matter how harsh the weather was – men had to leave the dwelling for hunting seals.
We would like to point out one artist especially in this exhibition. Abraham POV was born in 1927 at a small camp approximately fifty miles south of Povungnituk — hence the origin of his surname. His father, the late Joe Talirunili, was a famous Povungnituk artist. With his wife Annie and their three sons, Abraham moved to Inukjuak, where he became an active member of the community. In addition to carving, which he often did while out hunting, he worked building houses in Inukjuak. Abraham’s carvings are marked by a personal and recognizable style; they possess a solidity of form and are comprised of full, round, undulating shapes in which the detail is reduced to a minimal degree. His carvings of humans possess a haunting quality. Details such as the delineation of strands of hair peeking out from under a parka hood reinforce the mask-like qualities of the stylized faces. As a member of such an accomplished line of artists, it is not suprising that Abraham’s work can be found in many of the major public and private collections in Canada.
Excerpt courtesy Inuit Art Section, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), 1997.