Category Archives: Kenojuak Ashevak

Ningiukulu Teevee receives The Kenojuak Ashevak Memorial Award

Ningiukulu Teevee is the recipient of The 2023 Kenojuak Ashevak Memorial Award  (KAMA) – and I couldn’t be more delighted!   How fun to name two of my favourite artists in one celebratory sentence.  (Here’s a link to an Art Caravan post about Kenojuak Ashevak.)

KAMA is a collaboration between the Inuit Art Foundation and Winnipeg Art Gallery-Qaumajuq (WAG). Every two years it’s awarded to a mid-career Inuit artist. Ten artists are named to a long list, and receive cash awards, mentorship and promotion.  The long list is later whittled down to five artists who receive further cash prizes, and an exhibition at the WAG.  Maureen Gruben, another one of this year’s finalists, is the subject of this Art Caravan post from 2020.

Caribou in Bloom, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2021, linocut and hand colouring, Dorset Fine Arts image

Caribou in Bloom, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2021, Dorset Fine Arts image

The Art Caravan has also posted about Ning Teevee more than once.  (Who says you can’t have favourite artists and favourite genres?!)  Here’s a link to a recent interview in the Inuit Art Quarterly.  Teevee says, At first, I made art because we needed money. But then I felt that I needed to keep our stories alive—our Inuit myths and legends that were told by our Elders, like Mialia Jaw. Those became the main source of my inspiration for the subjects of my art. But some of my drawings are also about everyday life up here in the North.

If you want to read more about Teevee, IAQ also published an interesting article in which five art professionals respond to her work.

Ningiukulu Teevee

Ningiukulu Teevee

As one of my wise friends commented, “How can you not like an artist who makes you smile?”  Both Ning Teevee – and Kenojuak Ashevak – do that.  In addition, we get to enjoy  glimpses of their culture, personalities and  lives through their intriguing works.

Neutralizer, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2016, Dorset Fine Arts image

Neutralizer, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2016, Dorset Fine Arts image

I count it a BIG bonus that some of their original prints are very reasonably priced, and accessible to many art lovers.  Check out this year’s Dorset Fine Arts print release which includes an etching by Ningiukulu Teevee.

Kenojuak Ashevak, Owl’s Bouquet, 2007

More art fun!

Speaking of Inuit art, (previous post) who are your favourite Inuit artists?  Do you have one….or three?   If you’re an Art Caravan follower, you know I have a few favourites, including Kenojouak Ashevak (1927-2013) and Oviloo Tunnillie (1949-2014.)

Kenojuak Ashevak, image


Oviloo Tunillie, image

Ningiukulu Teevee is another contemporary (born in 1963) Inuit artist on my favourites list.  (Isn’t that the beauty of lists – easily edited, amended, and never ending?)  I first wrote about her in 2015.  She works in drawing and printmaking, including lithography, etching and aquatint, as well as the more traditional stone cut and stencil.  I am attracted to the sense of humour and playfulness evident in her art.  The print, Trance, seems especially appropriate to this covid winter. (sigh)

Trance, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2014, stonecut and stencil, edition of 50

Trance, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2014, stonecut and stencil, edition of 50

Her subject matter is varied; traditional stories and legends are explored, as well as contemporary experiences and life in the Arctic.  The works express a beguiling combination of charm and edginess.

You Know your Inuk When, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2016, Madrona Gallery image

Yesterday, Ningiekulu Teevee, 2008, stonecut and stencil, image

Since  2004, she has contributed to the annual Graphics Collection from Cape Dorset.  Boastful Owl, is a lithograph from the 2020 Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection. (Sold out!)

Boastful Owl, Ningiukulu Teevee, 2020, lithograph, image

In 2017, the Winnipeg Art Gallery exhibited a solo show of Teevee’s work at the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C.  Ningiukulu Teevee:  Kingait Stories caught the attention of the Smithsonian Magazine, who described the show  as unique and wonderful.

In 2019, Dorset Fine Arts, in conjunction with Pomegranate, published Ningiukulu Teevee:  Drawings and Prints from Cape Dorset.  Leslie Boyd’s writing accompanies the 80+ images and photographs.  Need a last minute Valentine’s Day gift?  The book is readily available through your local independent bookseller (I know, because I just ordered it!)

… thoughts for the new year, 2016

Maybe you’ve had enough resolutions for today.  But if you’re up to one more challenging idea, read on……

Something is wrong, I know it, if I don’t keep my attention on eternity. May I be the tiniest nail in the house of the universe, tiny but useful.
Attention is the beginning of devotion.

Mary Oliver, Upstream in Blue Iris

Vigilant Owl by Kenojuak Ashevak 2007

Vigilant Owl by Kenojuak Ashevak 2007

We can count on poets to challenge us. Mary Oliver is no exception. The beauty in her work consistently surprises me, and leads me to think more …realistically. Her ‘big’ ideas are grounded in the world around us, particularly the natural world.

Wishing you, and our world, a  year of awareness, usefulness and peace.



…and speaking of Kenojuak Ashevak…..

….most Canadians wouldn’t recognize her name, but many would be familiar with some of her artworks, especially the iconic The Enchanted Owl,  which was featured on a Canada Post stamp.

Enchanted Owl, Kenojuak Ashevak, image

Enchanted Owl, Kenojuak Ashevak, image

Kenojuak Ashevak was the first Inuit woman to make art at the Cape Dorset Print Shop.  She began to sell her prints at the annual Cape Dorset print release in 1959.

John Feeney produced a National Film Board of Canada film about her in 1963. It’s a lovely film, with glimpses into her life, and the process of printing from stone cuts. (It was nominated for an Academy Award in 1964.)

Kenojuak Ashevak received international recognition when she participated in the World’s Fair in Osada in 1970. She was prolific, and eventually worked in various forms of printmaking, as well as drawing and sculpture.

Kenojuak Ashevak  became a role model for other indigenous artists.  She received numerous awards in her lifetime, including the Order of Canada, and the Governor General’s Award for Visual Art.

She was born in an igloo on Baffin Island in 1927, and died on January 7, 2013 in Cape Dorset.  She left an amazing legacy.