Kigusiuq came from a large family of artists. She was the eldest daughter of Jessie Oonark, her siblings included artists Victoria Mamnguqsualuk and William Noah. She was married to Mark Uqayuittuq, son of Luke Anguhadluq, both highly regarded artists. Kigusiuq’s bright, bold and graphic work focused on camp life activities like hunting and fishing and supernatural forms inspired by Inuit spirituality and stories. The source of these motifs are principally drawn from childhood experiences at the family camp, Kitikat in the Back River region.
Throughout her career she experimented with many artistic mediums, including drawing, print, textiles, and wall hangings. She adopted printmaking following the family’s move to Baker Lake and between 1970 and 1988 she contributed to the Baker Lake print collections. Her mature work saw the development of colour field abstraction and collage techniques, which earned her a one woman show at the Museum of Inuit Art, and also a cover feature with Inuit Art Quarterly. Her work is included in several important permanent collections, including the National Museum of Arts in Quebec, and the National Gallery of Canada.
(Information mostly provided by Wikipedia)
Janet Kigusiuq was a multidisciplinary artist born in the Back River region, NU. Kigusiuq was the eldest daughter of Jessie Oonark and daughter-in-law of Luke Anguhadluq, both notable graphic artists. In the mid 1960s, Kigusiuq settled in Qamani’tuaq (Baker Lake), NU, where she began her artistic practice.
Throughout her artistic career, Kigusiuq experimented with many different mediums including drawing, print, textiles, wall hangings and towards the end of her career, collage. She began drawing in the mid 1960s by illustrating figurative scenes of camp life and oral traditions. Kigusiuq frequently depicted her figures in profile with distinctive eyes ringed by prominent eyelashes. Occasionally her figures were accompanied by text describing the scene. Her illustrated works generally depict gatherings of people, animals and other beings. In 1970 two of her prints were included in the Baker Lake Print Collection. As her career progressed, Kigusiuq incorporated more colour and greater abstraction into her works, the outlines of her subjects becoming less finite.
Kigusiuq moved easily between mediums. She created her first collage in 1995 as part of a diploma program set up by the Arctic College in Qamani’tuaq. Her collages feature bold, brightly coloured landscapes and camp scenes. The larger, more abstract shapes found in her landscapes were torn by hand, as in Red Lake with Rocks (1999), while the smaller pieces were precisely cut using scissors, such as the drying char in Orange Pipsi/Dried Fish (1998).
Kigusiuq’s works are found among numerous prominent collections, including the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, ON, the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, QC and the Winnipeg Art Gallery in Winnipeg, MB. Her collages were recently exhibited at Feheley Fine Arts in Toronto, ON at the exhibition Colour in April 2017. Her works have been featured twice on the cover of the Inuit Art Quarterly and she was elected as a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 2002.
(Information provided by Inuit Art Foundation)