Nunavik sculptor receives Quebec arts honour
Mattuisi Iyaituk recognized for "his ability to embrace innovation while remaining faithful to Inuit sculptural traditions"
Acclaimed Nunavik artist Mattiusi Iyaituk has been named to one of Quebec’s highest honours.
Iyaituk, a veteran sculptor from the Hudson Strait village of Ivujivik, will be appointed to Quebec’s Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec at an award ceremony later this month.
The prize, handed out by Quebec’s arts and literature council, honours individuals who have contributed to the province’s artistic development.
“[Iyaituk] has gained recognition for his ability to embrace innovation while remaining faithful to Inuit sculptural traditions, as well as for his blend of realism and abstraction in his highly stylized piece,” Quebec’s arts council said in a release.
Iyaituk, now 67, carved his first sculpture at age 14.
He worked for a time as a police officer, before returning to art.
By 1981, Iyaituk was carving full-time and was invited to exhibit solo at a gallery in San Francisco.
That launched a career that’s taken him across the United States, Europe and Asia where Iyaituk has exhibited work, given workshops and had his pieces featured in museum collections.
Iyaituk remains active as an Inuit art ambassador, travelling to workshops and art events in and outside Nunavik.
Iyaituk will receive his award at a May 28 ceremony.