Inuit Artists A Showcase and Celebration of Inuit Artists and their Art

Pauojoungie Saggiak - Inuit Artist

Pauojoungie Saggiak

Community: Kinngait (Cape Dorset), Nunavut, Canada
Born 1959

Pauojoungie Saggiak is the daughter of Inooki and Qimirpikuluk Oqutaq. She has a sister Napatchie and two brothers Lasaloosie and Niviaqsi. Growing up she lived in various camps, the last one being just southeast of Cape Dorset. It is here that Pauojoungie had an opportunity to see all manner of birds and animals which she enjoyed so much that she began drawing wildlife. Pauojoungie and her family moved to the Cape Dorset community in the 1970s. At Kinngait Studios she became inspired by the work of other graphic artists, and this is where her work became adapted for the print medium. Pauojoungie’s highly accomplished work is characterized by bold lines and blocks of often heightened colours. Her compositions are distilled to their essence, which showcases an intuitive understanding of the subject matter.  (Information and photo provided by Dorset Fine Arts.)

Even though Pauojoungie is now in her 60’s, she is just beginning her career and reputation as a superbly talented Inuit Artist. Her first prints debuted in 2016 as part of the Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection, and she continues to contribute her original work to the growing legacy of Inuit Artists working at Cape Dorset.


Pauojoungie Saggiak (b.1959) is a graphic artist from Iqaluit, NU. Saggiak grew up living with her family throughout southwest Baffin Island. As a child she was enthralled by the birds and animals near her family’s camp and began to draw what she saw. This period of time had a strong impact on Saggiak’s creative vision. In 1970 she moved with her family to Kinngait (Cape Dorset), NU. Saggiak was subsequently inspired by the work of other graphic artists in the community and rekindled her artistic practice at the Kinngait Studios.

Saggiak appeared in the Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection for the first time in 2016. Four of her prints were included in the collection and juxtapose themes of avian and sea life. Her bird prints were created using the stonecut and stencil method, allowing for crisp linework and precise blocks of colour on their plumage. This technique is expertly applied in Timmiaralaaq (Little Bird) (2016) highlighting the bright brown feathers on the bird’s back and the delicate black feathers surrounding their face. The bird illustrated in Timmiaralaaq (Little Bird) (2016) is a lapland longspur, a summer resident in the Arctic. Another summer bird is the snowy owl in Watchful Eyes (2016), the heavy black feathers and framed face suggesting its youth and newfound independence.

In contrast, her prints Counting Char (2016) and Treasures of the Sea (2016) were reproduced as lithographs and make use of colourful, regularly patterned motifs. Each fish and shell are uniquely designed, highlighting an array of diversity within the surficial organization. Counting Char (2016) could be an homage to Saggiak’s birthplace of Iqaluit, whose name is derived from the abundance of fish in the nearby waters. This bounty is aptly represented in the print by a lively school of char swimming towards an unseen current. Saggiak’s compositions are layered with the endearment of childhood memories. The small shells in Treasures of the Sea (2016) could have been collected during summer beachcombing when the ocean is no longer locked in ice. Treasures of the Sea (2016) is a playful composition that delights in the natural geometry of the shells and their orientation to one another. The spiralling tops of the shells create concentric circles among their rhomboid bodies, which in turn align into an overall rectangular arrangement. The wildlife in Saggiak’s works are reflections of her memories spent on the land, all depicted with detailed realism and sensitivity.

Saggiak’s works were exhibited throughout commercial galleries in October 2016 as part of the 2016 Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection tour, as well as at the Nunatta Sunakkutaangit Museum in Iqaluit.

(Information provided by Inuit Art Foundation)

Available Work

Pauojoungie Saggiak - Inuit Art Gallery - A Showcase and Celebration of this Inuit Artist's Life and Work

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