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Quinuayark, Noah
Ducks Ducks
1961 1961

Printmaking flourished in many Inuit communities in the early
1960s, buoyed by a changing art world, Canadian nationalism, and
reshaped attitudes towards Indigenous culture. Puvirnituq
[Povungnetuk], in Nunavik [Arctic Quebec], was among the first
communities to develop a print studio, when the artist Gordon
Yearsley was hired by the co-operative to administer a print
program. Yearsley focused upon the stone-cut relief and stencil
technique. Artists such as Noah Quinuayark, Thomassiapik
Sivuarapik, Leah Qumaluk, and others, created their first
experimental prints in 1961. That same year, printmakers from
Cape Dorset, which was the first Inuit community to begin
printmaking, traveled to Puvirnituq to share their knowledge.
Yearsley left due to differences with Father Andre Steinmann, the
influential Catholic missionary. Vctor Tinkl was hired in 1962 to
continue the print program. The Puvirnituq studio adopted the
modern sosaku-hanga “self-printing” method, whereby the graphic
artist cut his/her own block and printed the images, in contrast to
the division of print labour that had emerged in Cape Dorset.
The Puvirnituq studio submitted its first prints to the Canadian
Eskimo Arts Council advisory board in 1962. The community
released its first annual collection in that year as a co-release with
Cape Dorset (subsequent releases would be independent). The
Puvirnituq co-operative built a studio facility in the community, and
printmaking expanded, with exhibitions across Canada, the US and
internationally. Puvirnituq prints are known for their direct,
“unpolished” look, the frequent inclusion of text, and hunting,
myth, and historical scenes.
Printmaking began to decline in Puvirnituq in the 1980s. A fire
gutted the studio, which effectively ended printmaking in
Puvirnituq in 1989.

 
Quinuayark, Noah
QC 1919-Puvirnituq QC 1963 QC 1919-Puvirnituq QC 1963
Ducks Ducks
1961 1961
Stonecut on paper, 11/50 Stonecut on paper, 11/50
47.8 x 62.0 cm
Gift of Margaret McGowan Arts '78, 2017 Gift of Margaret McGowan Arts '78, 2017
60-003.02

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