Napachie Ashoona

Napachie Ashoona was born the 10 October 1974 in Iqaluit (Frobisher Bay)

He is a member of one of the most prominent families of Inuit artists in Canada. His grandmother, Pitseolak Ashoona, was a famous printmaker, and so is his talented mother Sorosiluto. His father Kiawak and uncle Kaka (now deceased) are the two foremost Inuit artists. Other well-known artists in the family include his uncles Koomwartok (now deceased) and Namonai, and his aunt Napatchie, all three sculptors.

When Napachie was a small child, he used to watch his father carving and occasionally would help him sand or file. With a lot of patience and help from his father, he soon learned how to handle the stone. Undoubtedly, Kiawak had a very strong influence on Napachie, both in style and thematically.

Like his father, Napachie enjoys carving the human body in action and engaged in traditional activities such as hunters with harpoons and mothers with children. With their expressive and very detailed faces, and bodies in full motion, Napachie's hunters and drum dancers are very reminiscent of Kiawak's work, and approach the Master's technical control in representing the volume. Napachie also explores the rich world of Inuit mythological imagery, so present in his father's work.

Napachie carves in the local stone called serpentine. It is very hard metamorphic rock indigenous to Baffin Island, with a structure similar to jade. The colour of the stone varies from light green to brown or even black and like his father, Napachie prefers the darker shades.

Napachie presently lives and carves in the community of Cape Dorset.

January 2014 – The New Generation, Willock & Sax Gallery
November-December 1995: Miniaturen -- Inuit Galerie, Mannheim, Germany
September 1995: Sedna: Spirit of the Sea -- Feheley Fine Arts, Toronto, Ontario
April-May 1994: Mythic Image -- Ancestral Spirits Gallery, Port Townsend, Washington
Nov-Dec 1992: Inuit Sculpture -- New Acquisitions Pucker Gallery, Boston, MA