Inuit Art from the collection of Dr Samuel Wagonfeld and his wife Sally Allen
PAGE 3 of 3 of the virtual tour of the exhibition
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|Another Shaman transformation piece.
I am fascinated by the shaman in these
|This piece is another favorite of mine and of Dr. Wagonfeld. It is called "Spirit Boat"
There is a Shaman on the front and a Shaman on the back of the boat, on looking on
the past and one looking to the future. A very beautiful piece. An interesting story
about this piece - it is carved out of a soft Brazillian stone and when they got the
piece in one of the Shaman's arms were broken off. They contacted the artist and he
created a new figure for them Below this image is the original piece and they have
since had it repaired and mounted on it's own base. The piece on it's own base was
one of my favorites in the collection as well.
|Here is the original piece from the Spirit Boat
|Text for the items above
|Another one of Dr. Wagonfeld's favorite pieces.
|Thank you to Dr. Wagonfeld and Sally
for such a wonderful collection and
sharing it with everyone!
|Rand African Art
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The northernmost indigenous inhabitants of Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Russia are the Inuit, a word which
means "the people" in their language. The Inuit homeland, Nunavut, became Canada's newest territory in 1999.
Greenland is part of the Kingdom of Denmark, but the Inuit there are also moving toward greater autonomy.
The Inuit were the most recent migration of people from the Old World to the New World across the gap between
Siberia and Alaska. The earliest Asiatic hunters followed their prey between 40,000 and 25,000 years ago across
the Bering land bridge that existed during the Ice Age. Later immigrants had to use boats to cross the Bering Strait.
Some areas of Nunavut were sporadically populated by Indian groups as early as 8,000 years ago, but continuous
settlement was accomplished by two groups, the Paleoeskimo Dorset culture from 4,000 to 700 years ago and the
Neoeskimo Thule culture beginning about 1,000 years ago. (Note: nowadays, it's not considered polite to refer to
Inuit people as "eskimo," a word from the Cree Indian language which means "eaters of raw meat.")
Prehistoric Inuit developed a way of life well-suited to their Arctic environment, based on fishing; hunting seals,
whales, and walruses in the ocean; and hunting caribou, polar bears, and other game on land. They lived in tents
or traveled in skin-covered boats called kayaks and umiaks in summer, and stayed in houses made of sod over
winter, building igloos when traveling by dogsled on hunting trips. Their culture was largely based on nature and
the land, passed on through storytelling, dancing, drumming, and other rituals. Sharing was an important
characteristic, and intergroup warfare was rare.
Contact with the outside world has drastically changed Inuit life. Most people now live in wood houses and wear
modern clothing instead of garments fashioned from animal skins. Snowmobiles and outboards have replaced
traditional vehicles, and the population is concentrated in larger settlements near trading posts. Still, the Inuit are
trying to preserve their language and identity in a changing world. Their visual arts and sculpture are widely
admired, and their growing political status is a hopeful sign for the future of "the people."
|Click here to go to snowowl.com for
more information about the Inuit
|Rand African Art