Seated Figure, 1968
12.8 x 7 x 13.3 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Twomey Collection, with appreciation to the Province of Manitoba and Government of Canada
Arviat artists generally work with the natural shape of raw pieces of the local hard, steatite stone. They keep detail to a minimum and rarely pierce the stone. The abstracted creations of John Pangnark have typified this aesthetic since his early recognition as an artist of note in 1970. In that year he was invited to demonstrate stone carving at Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan, and his work was featured with that of graphic artist Jessie Oonark in a touring exhibition organized by the National Museum of Man, now the Canadian Museum of Civilization, in Gatineau, Quebec. Pangnark’s carvings usually interpret single human figures. He began carving in the mid-1960s, and this early Seated Figure still has clear anatomical references and polished surfaces as well as the more abstract formal qualities of his later pieces.