ashoona

Shuvinai Ashoona

Aboriginal Gathering Place Speaker Series

We are very pleased to present artist  Shuvinai Ashoona!
Aboriginal Gathering Place Speaker Series
Join us at the AGP on Wednesday October 11, 2:30-3:30pm.

Shuvinai Ashoona was born in 1961 in Cape Dorset on Baffin Island. She is the daughter of the well-known sculptor Kiawak Ashoona and granddaughter of the late Pitseolak Ashoona, the great graphic artist. Her own career started in the mid-1990s when she began making drawings for the West Baffin Eskimo Cooperative. Often startlingly different from other Cape Dorset graphic expression, her works have not always been readily accepted by collectors of Inuit art. Nevertheless, in recent years Ashoona’s reputation as a contemporary artist has steadily grown.

Ashoona’s first works were small monochromatic ink drawings depicting the land. Many of these works show receding expanses of rocky tundra with sparse vegetation; streams run over the land in some images, often turning into small waterfalls. Although a few works show a horizon, the majority look down upon the landscape from a nearly aerial, closed off perspective. Atmospheric and delicately detailed, these early drawings are often characterized by a subtle eeriness.

In the late 1990s, Ashoona’s images became less naturalistic and darker in mood. Works based more on imagination than on observation of the physical world started to appear, suggesting a strong inner vision. Many drawings from this period portray subterrnean caverns littered with boulders and spanned by twisting formations. Darkened or illuminated tunnels also appear frequently, as do step- and shelf-like forms. These psychologically charged works are densely and sometimes obsessively drawn. Recently, Ashoona has started to use a range of colour in her images, depicting people and common objects but in her own unique vision, often including textual commentary. While lighter in mood, these works remain obliquely representational in a manner distinctly hers.

3Ashoona_Scary_Dream

 

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