This issue presents the story of stone, a central material used in Inuit art throughout Inuit Nunangat going back to the 1950s. The medium became an important tool through which artists were able to portray their culture and land. As stone carvings became recognized as a way to make an income for entrepreneurial Inuit and their families, their popularity increased across Inuit Nunangat. Quarries throughout the Arctic became important sites of economic stability for Inuit in those early days, when development was scarce.
Quickly, stone became an important part of community economics in the developing North, with co-ops buying carvings from artists, and sometimes from whole families of artists, before shipping them to southern retailers.
The popularity for these works in stone, both in Southern Canada and worldwide, lasted for several decades before shifting in the 1980s. Despite this change in demand, highly-skilled and creative Inuit artists with a mastery of stone continue to thrive.
This Quarterly is in celebration of those Inuit carvers who were and still are popular and who continue to gain renown as important artists in Canada and beyond. I feel our magazine is steadily expanding and is continuing to grow and adapt to the needs of our artists due to our very creative and hardworking staff. I hope you enjoy this first issue of 2017.