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Graphite drawing featuring two female figures with circular heads and two geese | Donald Ellis Gallery

Untitled (Two Figures with Geese)

Kovinatilliak Parr (1893-1969)
Inuit
Cape Dorset, Nunavut

ca. 1961

graphite on paper

height: 24"
width: 18"

Inventory # E4262

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This drawing comes from the "Terry Ryan sketchbook".

Kovinatilliak Parr (1893 - 1969), known by his artist name Parr, is one of the most celebrated Inuit artists of the 20th century. Born on the southern coast of Baffin Island, Canada, in 1893, he and his wife Eleeshushe Parr led a nomadic existence for most of their lives, but settled permanently in Cape Dorset, Baffin Island after a serious hunting accident in 1961. By this time, Cape Dorset had already become a famous Inuit artist colony founded by James Huston in the early 1950s. While still hospitalized for frostbite, Parr was gifted a spiral sketchpad by Terrence Ryan, a young art student trained at the Ontario College of Art who had become resident arts advisor. It was at Ryan’s encouragement that Parr took up drawing at the age of 68. Untitled (Two Figures with Geese) is among the first works created by this important artist, and displays many characteristics of Parr’s early style.

Parr's drawings and prints are in the permanent collections of major institutions worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; and the British Museum, London. The artist has been featured in numerous important exhibitions and has been the subject of three solo shows. In 1977, the print Hunters of Old was selected for a Canadian postage stamp.