The Canada Auction Series: Inuit Art
May 27 — June 01, 2023
Auction begins to close at 7:00 pm ET
Luke Anowtalik ᓗ ᐊᓇᐅᑕᓕ (1932-2006)
Private Collection, Seattle, WA
Luke Anowtalik belonged to the Ahiarmiut, often referred to by outsiders as the Caribou Inuit due to their close dependence on the hunting of caribou for subsistence. It would not be an exaggeration to say that much of Anowtalik’s early life was shaped by the pursuit of these all-important animals. Later in life, they provided the material for his well-known acrobat sculptures and the inspiration for some of his most profound imagery.
Orphaned by the death of his parents in the 1940s, Anowtalik was adopted into a family from the Ennadai Lake area in the 1950s. His new family is noted frequently in Farley Mowat’s 1951 book People of the Deer and in 1959 in The Desperate People, books which chronicled the starvation and mismanaged government attempts to relocate the Ahiarmiut to Nueltin and then Henik Lake in the 1950s.
The present monumental sculpture addresses his most essential subject and brings together the two sculptural mediums – antler and stone – for which he is best known.
Gerald Kuehl, Portraits of the Far North, (Winnipeg: Vidacom Publications, 2019)