Kananginak Pootoogook

One of the most respected elders in the Cape Dorset community, Kananginak Pootoogook, passed away last week at age 75.  His work is in our current Nipirasait exhibition at the Canadian Embassy in DC.  I was very lucky to have met Kananginak on two occasions at his home in Cape Dorset, Nunavut.  It was a little intimidating since I obviously don’t speak Inuktitut.  But Jimmy Manning was there, the metaphorical shaman that passes between the Inuit and the southern “qaalunaat” like me.  Kananginak was known as the “Audubon of the north” with his carefully rendered and thoughtful depictions of nature and the environment.  I have some pictures at school that I’ll post tomorrow.

St. Lawrence owns several of Kananginak’s prints, including one of my favorites, “Amiraijaktuk, Shedding the Velvet.”

His print “Intrepid Caribou” was also represented on the card for an exhibition at the gallery in 2005 entitled “Far North.”

Kananginak had a major retrospective exhibition of fifty years of work last February-March 2010 at the Museum of Inuit Art in Toronto.


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