Grieving Woman, 1997
35 x 12.5 x 11.3 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Gift of the Volunteer Committee to the Winnipeg Art Gallery in commemoration of the Volunteer Committee’s 50th Anniversary, 1948-1998
Oviloo Tunnillie is one of the most original of the second generation of Inuit artists: those who grew up seeing art created by their elders in the 1950s, when carvings and prints became an exciting new industry. She watched her father Toonoo as he carved, and she also began to carve in the early 1960s. Tunnillie has developed a style that features unadorned surfaces and intensely personal subjects. She frequently expresses raw emotion, as embodied in this sculpture. Her art focuses on the female form and life experiences, and most often the experiences are her own. Her autobiographical references are the precursors of a third generation of artists who are currently putting their modern-day experiences into their art.