Un­ti­tled (Many rocks but lit­tle bread)

(1973)

Inuit Art Quarterly - - 5 WORKS - ASH­LEY MCLEL­LAN Pro­files Editor Selena Tuck­too

Un­der­stand­ing an artist’s in­tent can be dif­fi­cult, with the vis­ual cues on of­fer go­ing a long way in de­ci­pher­ing mean­ing. In this pho­to­graph from the early 1970s, Tuck­too cap­tures a small group seated on a rocky out­crop near Talur­juaq (Taloyoak), NU.

Just above them, painted in bold white let­ters on the un­even sur­face, are the words “Many rocks but lit­tle bread by C.F. ” There in­deed ap­pears to be no bread but many rocks, mak­ing the script eas­ily in­ter­preted as deeply po­lit­i­cal and re­flec­tive of a time of im­mense so­cial up­heaval. How­ever, when asked, Tuck­too laughed, of­fer­ing an al­to­gether dif­fer­ent read­ing: “My sib­lings, ev­ery now and then we go camp­ing… when we have no place to pitch our tent: many rocks but lit­tle bread.” Although text in art can of­fer a tan­ta­liz­ingly clear an­swer, it all too of­ten spurs a false start down the wrong path.

ART GALLERY OF ON­TARIO

Selena Tuck­too (b. 1949 Talur­juaq) —Un­ti­tled (Many rocks but lit­tle bread) 1973Gelatin sil­ver print 17.3 × 17.5 cm

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