Simon Shaimaiyuk

Simon Shaimaiyuk (1915-1999)
Pangnirtung, Nunavut, Canada

Simon was born in Umanaqjuaq (Blacklead Island) to father Natiapik (Christian name Jimmy) and mother Unapik (Christian name Mary) during the last years of the whaling era.  His older brother Koviyuk Natiapik carved till old aged slowed him down. Simon used to carve small ivory carvings of Inuit and animals, but today he still makes ulus out of saw blades and his drawings have become internationally well known. He is one of the last elders to put oral history on paper. His drawings are culturally diverse from a whaling scene to a transforming shaman or of a creature that shamans would use to drive out the illness of the Inuit.

— From an interview with July Papatsie March 1996, Excerpt courtesy Inuit Art Section, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), 1997.

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