The Return of the SunEnlarge image

The Return of the Sun, 1961

Kenojuak Ashevak
Canadian (Inuit), 1927 - 2013
colour stonecut on wove paper
Printed by Lukta Qiatsuk
61.5 x 92.2 cm
Gift of the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, 1989
National Gallery of Canada (no. 36505)
© West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative Ltd.

The return of the sun - or the winter solstice - was marked with festivities and special rituals by many Inuit groups. The "qulliq" or stone lamp might be extinguished and relit to signify the beginning of a new year. The cup-and-pin game known as "ajagaq" might be played to encourage the sun to come up higher. In this print, Kenojuak's lyrical web of bird and animal forms reminds the viewer that with the light comes more plentiful game and easier times for the hunters and the people they feed." The Return of the Sun" was featured on a Canadian postage stamp in 1980.


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