(1897 - 1993)

John Kavik was a sculptor and ceramicist from Uqsuqtuuq (Gjoa Haven), Nunavut living in the area between Qamani’tuaq (Baker Lake) and Ikaluktutiak (Cambridge Bay). Kavik discovered his passion for carving later in life, following his experience working in mines in Kangiqliniq (Rankin Inlet), Nunavut.

A prominent theme in Kavik's work is the human figure, in particular his sculptures of mothers with their children. Kavik generally carved solitary, expressive figures and sparingly used deep grooves to denote mouths, kamiik (boots) and parkas. He frequently used small drill holes to create eyes and nostrils or the outlines of hands. Often his figures had a rough texture and were unpolished, however, figures such as Somersaulting Man: As I Think of Myself (1964) were exceptions to this stylistic preference. Kavik also worked as a ceramicist, crafting thick pieces featuring motifs of people and animals emerging from the sides of the vessel in addition to clay figures that emulated his carving style.

-Excerpt from Inuit Art Foundation