Mattiusi Iyaituk
Various Regions :: Inuit Sculpture

Listening to the Sounds of Nature
Listening to the Sounds of Nature, 2001
serpentine, caribou antler, musk-ox hair, 25" × 13" × 9"
The Visitors and the Visited
The Visitors and the Visited, 2001
serpentine, caribou antler, musk-ox hair, 19½" × 21" × 7"
Throat Singing
Throat Singing, 2001
serpentine, caribou antler, musk-ox hair, sinew, 24" × 16" × 7"
Wind From Behind
Wind From Behind, 2001
serpentine, caribou antler, musk-ox hair, sinew, 28½" × 14" × 8"


Mattiusi Iyaituk – Artist Biography

Mattisui Iyaituk

Mattiusi Iyaituk was born in 1950 in Kikitajuar, near Akulivik, Quebec, Canada. His family moved to Ivujivik when he was four years old. A self-taught artist, Iyaituk began carving at the age of fifteen after being inspired by other artists such as his father and older brother. He held various jobs, including a position with the Quebec Provincial Police, until he began carving full-time in 1979. Since then, Iyaituk had adopted an abstract style that reduces details to their most simplistic form. Typically, his highly evocative works are a combination of different types of stone, set off with muskox hair and inlaid caribou antler and whale bone. Iyaituk has stated that he feels his artwork bridges different worlds - the abstract forms are considered by many to be in the modernist tradition, combined with the more traditional Inuit technique of inlaying.

In 1991, Iyaituk became the director of the Inuit Art Foundation. He has travelled extensively as an art consultant, including accompanying the exhibition Transitions: Contemporary Indian and Inuit Art to Taiwan in 1999. He has also exhibited in Europe, and the United States.

I met Mattiusi in 1983. His great smile and sense of humour impressed me instantly and, after seeing his sculptures, I did not hesitate in offering him a solo show at Gallery Phillip. Many pieces sold before the opening due to their tremendous impact. His work is radically different from other Inuit carvers — they emanate a powerful energy.

In his recent work, Mattiusi experiments with a variety of materials — stone is often combined with muskox hair or antler to create complex figures with distinct facial expressions. The use of antler suggests the human form while the faces are stylized and exaggerated, lending a dramatic effect to the work. Mattiusi's evocative titles and the distinct mixture of the expressive and the simple make him a worthy successor to such masters as Henry Moore.

— Phillip Gevik, Director

Daphne OdjigDaphne Odjig, Canadian Indigenous Artist and Icon Dies at 97. Click here for more details.

Odjig is frequently referred to as the "Grandmother of Indigenous Art." She has been the recipient of many awards, honours and recognitions for her works, to name a few: The Order of Canada, the Governor General's Award, and eight Honorary Doctorates. Her works have been shown in the National Gallery of Canada, The McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the Canadian Museum of Civilization and the Art Gallery of Ontario.

She established the first native-run fine art print house in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1971. Known as 'Odjig Indian Prints,' this print house was so successful that it evolved into an Indigenous gallery space in 1974, called the New Warehouse Gallery, run by Odjig and her husband, Chester Beavon. She was also a founding member of the Indian Group of Seven. This artistic group's purpose was to promote Contemporary Indigenous art and artists.

Alex JanvierAlex Janvier's major retrospective, "Alex Janvier: Modern Indigenous Master" is now on display at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa.

Alex Janvier is one of Canada's most acclaimed contemporary Indigenous artists. His career of sixty-five years has yielded thousands of paintings, and more than twenty-five murals and public commissions. This retrospective of his artwork is on display from 25 November 2016 to 17 April 2017.

(Photo credit: Kim Griffiths) Click here for more details.