I love the work of Alice Nanogak, having seen pieces in a couple of exhibitions of Inuit prints (that blew me away) over the past few years, and then through her fantastic illustrations for the book of Inuit folk tales,"Tales of the Igloo," a copy of which I found--and sold--recently. So when I spotted this and one other of her prints at an antiques shop recently, I snatched them up immediately.
This is a limited edition stone-cut (from an edition of 24 I believe) hand-printed at the Holman Eskimo Co-operative in Holman, NWT, c. late 1960s-70s. I just love this baby, one hand and head cocked toward the sky, the other reaching toward his mother, who seems wonderfully gentle and composed as she goes about her work all the while. There is a terrific directness but also specificity of the print, including the pillow upon which the mother sits and the tools she is using for her task, which I assume is some sort of craft. A very tender piece, executed in black ink on rice paper.
Image size is 8 7/8" x 5 7/8". Framed: 15 1/2 x 12 1/2". I removed the print from the frame I found it in, had it archivally matted, and then framed in a simple black frame, wired on the back for hanging. I left it attached to backing board on which it was originally mounted as it could not easily be removed. The tape used to mount it on that board is slightly visible in the top corners of the print, and there is just a tiny bit of wrinkling to the paper along the bottom edge at the center, very minor.
Alice Nanogak (Goose) (1925- 2001) was born in the Baillie Islands, Northwest Territories and settled in Holman with her family when she was 14 years old. Her mother was a Mackenzie Delta Inuit and her father from Alaska, who travelled to the Canadian Arctic with Icelandic explorer Vilhjalmur Stefansson (1879-1962). Nanogak was one of the first artists to provide drawings for The Holman Eskimo Co-operative-- founded by a group of artists and Father Henri Tardy, an Oblate missionary, in 1961-which released their first set of prints in 1965, and to which she continued to contribute work for prints for several decades. Her work includes original illustrations for two books of Inuit legends, "Tales from the Igloo" in 1972 and "More Tales from the Igloo" (1986), which she also narrated. In 1985 she received an honorary degree from Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, and was honored with a retrospective at Winnipeg Art Gallery in 2002.