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Pilipusi Novalinga

Untitled (Mother and Child)

Artist

Pilipusi Novalinga
1906-1987

Title

Untitled (Mother and Child)

Date

About 1950-1952

Materials

Stone, ivory, natural resin

Dimensions

19.3 x 13.6 x 14 cm

Credits

Gift of the Museum of Inuit Art, Toronto, inv. 2018.102

Collection

Quebec and Canadian Art

Pilipusi Novalinga is now considered, just like his older brother Akeeaktashuk (1898-1954), one of the major figures of the early years of modern Inuit art in Inukjuak, in Nunavik. He, along with his family, was part of the group of people called the “High Arctic Exiles,” who in 1953 were relocated to Grise Fiord on Ellesmere Island and Resolute on Cornwallis Island in the Canadian Far North in order to justify those areas belonging to Canada.


Beginning in 1948, thanks to its marketing in Montreal by the Canadian Handicrafts Guild (today’s La Guilde), Inuit art garnered public interest with works like that of Novalinga. The late 1950s saw artists start to organize themselves into co-operatives. That move reinforced a sense of collective identity and at the time contributed to a determination to create Inuit-run political organizations and public institutions.

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