Cape Dorset born Noah Jaw carves a beautiful, strong and clean Polar Bear from serpentine stone.
For thousands of years, the Inuit peoples of Cape Dorset have been creating artworks from stone, bone and ivory. Many of the early objects that came from these communities were small portable utilitarian items, knives (ulu) and axes, that were decoratively embellished with imagery from the north. Once settlers arrived in the Arctic, the Inuit began trading carvings with European whalers and visitors.
The catalyst for Inuit Art as a commercial enterprise began with James Houston and his work with the Canadian Handcrafts Guild. Houston travelled to various communities in the north purchasing items which were presented at a 1949 exhibition at the Guild. Carving continues to be an important aspect of economic development in the Arctic, and artists from Cape Dorset are celebrated world-wide.
Bears are an extremely popular subject matter when it comes to Inuit Art. This may be because the polar bear is one of the most iconic animals in the North. As powerful and majestic animals, the polar bear remains at the top of the food chain in the north and is protective of its family. Many Inuit artists have a remarkable ability to capture the life-like dimensions and forms of the polar bear because of their close contact and familiarity with the animal.
The serpentine carvings from Cape Dorset that depict both naturalistic and dancing bears are like none-other in the world, and we are delighted that we can share their beauty and elegance with you.
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