Drawing for "The Owl", Kenojuak, c. 1969
Date of Issue
May 17, 1993
Masterpieces of Canadian Art
Series Time Span
1988 - 2002
Perforation or Dimension
12.5 x 13
Based on a drawing by Kenojuak Ashevak. Designed by Pierre-Yves Pelletier.
Kenojuak Ashevak, "The Owl", circa 1969 National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
In recognition of The International Year of the World's Indigenous People, this year's Masterpieces of Canadian Art stamp features Drawing for "The Owl", a felt-tip pen on wove paper art work by Kenojuak Ashevak, an Inuit artist from Cape Dorset. Although the Inuit are an ancient civilization, little was known of their artistic pursuits until James Houston arrived in 1948 as the civil administrator for West Baffin. He introduced print-making to the local artists and Kenojuak soon distinguished herself in the field. Born in 1927 at the Baffin Island camp of Ikerrasak, she was originally reluctant to undertake drawing, since this was the domain of men. However, she took the paper offered by Mrs. Houston, beginning her fascination with the graphic arts. She works mainly in graphite, coloured pencils and felt-tip pens, rarely using poster paints, watercolours or acrylics. Many of her prints are not "pure Kenojuak", since the addition of colour shading and texturing is done by lithographers. This year's masterpiece displays the original work - a "true Kenojuak", which reveals much about her original techniques. Not attempting realism, she embellishes her work to the point of abstraction. She insists that the owl has no special significance, but everytime she faces a piece of paper, an owl always seems to emerge.
Canada Post Corporation. Canada's Stamps Details, No. 10, 1993, p. 12-13.
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