OSUITOK IPEELEE, R.C.A., CAPE DORSET/KINNGAIT, E7-1154, Cape Dorset
ESKIMO LEGEND: OWL, FOX AND HARE
unframed 24 ins x 18 ins; 61 cms x 45.7 cms
In the early days of print making in Cape Dorset the printmakers had to be quite resourceful. An example of their creative methods and the experimental nature of the project was the use of James Houston’s shaving brush as a stencil brush in the creation of what later became this iconic image. The technique of blending the colours through the stencil provided a softer effect than the use of a roller to apply colour.
Osuitok had been incising on tusks before he met James Houston. He was integral to the start of the print making program in Cape Dorset but contributed just two prints to the 1959 collection. Although Osuitok had a history of creating graphic art, he gravitated strongly towards carving and became much celebrated for his incredible sculptural work.
Norman Vorano, Inuit Prints: Japanese Inspiration, Early Printmaking in the Canadian Arctic, Canadian Museum of Civilization, 2011, page 57.